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212 reviews

Caribou Coffee Employee Reviews

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Being a barista can be taxing, but fun.
Barista/Shift Supervisor (Current Employee), Overland Park, KSJune 29, 2015
Pros: one free beverage or free drip brew coffee(unlimited)
Cons: Tightly wound customers itching for their coffee fix.
Being a barista, especially a supervisor of baristas, is a ridiculously dramatic job and requires a balance between managing employees and doing the grunt work. The customer side of things can be difficult as well because when someone wants an order done a certain way you sometimes have to just wing it because there is no sure fire way of doing that order.
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Fast-paced environment
Shift Supervisor (Current Employee), Wayzata, MNJune 24, 2015
Pros: Free shift drinks, supportive manager
Cons: Low pay for the amount of stress
As a shift supervisor, you will either open or close. Depending on the size of the store, you may or may not have a team member to assist you during the very early or very late hours. If you are located in a Lund's, you will work by yourself for the first few hours and the last few hours, as Lund's stores are open much later and there are plenty of people around. If you work in a neighborhood store, you will always have someone else working with you. Opening includes setting up coffee filters, setting up espresso machines and timing the shots, setting up the bakery case, assigning registers, ensuring that the trivia is correct, and overall getting ready for the day. As the main product that we are selling is caffeine, the rush may be early in the morning if you are working at a drive-thru, serving the 9-5ers as they begin their day. The remainder of the day is working on register, or bar, or providing support if you have team members to cover both positions. Rushes can be stressful and hectic. Lines can get long, people can grow impatient, others might order several complicated drinks slowing the line down, coffee might run out needing to be brewed again, a team member might be new, or the machines might need to be repaired, requiring you to submit a work order. The best thing to do is to keep calm and set a positive example for your team members. Task delegation is a significant part of this role as there might be several things requiring attention at the same time. As for closing, the duties include setting up for the morning, weighing out coffees, cleaning the store, counting – more... down the registers, and filling out some minor paperwork. I find that I do not usually work with the store manager anymore, as my job is to be them while they are not on the floor. We communicate, and the store manager assists me with any problems/issues I may have with my role and with team members. The work/life balance is pretty good, as Caribou generally discourages overtime. Some challenges I have faced are meeting quotas to sell our special limited time only beans that seem to come out every month. The pay is not enough to be independent. I am thankful with how supportive management is with my personal goals after Caribou.

Coworkers can range from high school aged students to folks with degrees hit hard by the recession to retired folks who are working part time. I would say that for the most part, speaking for my location, that I got lucky in terms of team members. They seem to be hard-working and competent at their jobs. I have heard different stories of other locations, however, as I have not personally worked their myself, I cannot validate their claims.

Things I don't enjoy are the stress of the job that comes during a rush and the sometimes unreasonable demands that a customer might have of us. For example, a customer may demand several boxes of coffee to go right away while we are in the middle of a rush. Many demands come flying at us in different directions, but we are always expected to keep a calm demeanor and provide excellent service. We do the best we can, but sometimes certain things cannot be done right away, and we have to be straightforward, suggesting feasible alternatives. For the breadth of responsibilities we have and the multitasking, I feel that our pay is a bit too low.

I do enjoy the teamwork and the feeling of getting through a rush and the feeling of accomplishment that accompanies and of our small victories throughout the day. I enjoy seeing my regular customers and helping them have a better day by providing them with what they want. – less
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Very friendly and comfortable work environment
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Chicago, ILJune 19, 2015
This was an awesome company to work for. The management and employees got along and worked well with one another. I really believed in working for this company because they had numerous social cause that they worked for and donated to.
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great workplace
Barista (Former Employee), Aurora, COJune 13, 2015
Pros: Allowed to get free lunches and precentage off drinks
Cons: No breaks or lunch
Customer Service for sure all day long, Cleaning the bathrooms and making sure floors are clean in the entire building, Facing the coffee products waiting to be sold, making drinks and food correctly for the customer, and opening and closing the store preparing the night and day bakery and or drinks to be made.
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It was some of the greatest 8.5 years
Senior Level General Manager (Former Employee), Arlington Heights, ILJune 12, 2015
Pros: flexible shifts, great teams
Cons: work-life balance
I met so many wonderful customers who came everyday. It was my job to make their day better, but so often they made our day better. We worked our tails off, but we had the ability to hire some amazing people so working together was seamless and fun.
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Great place to work!
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Cincinnati, OHJune 9, 2015
A typical day started out with opening operations, preparing all coffee for the day, inventory log, cash drawer balancing. You would get rush's through out the day, and in between, there was plenty of downtime to clean and rotate product. All my co-workers were wonderful, it was like a family. I enjoyed everything about the job, unfortunately corporate decided to close all the stores in the Cincinnati area.
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Great Productivity and a fun work place
Barista (Former Employee), Lincoln, NEJune 8, 2015
Pros: Free Drinks
Cons: Not really any breaks
I enjoyed my time at Caribou Coffee because the management was great and they always worked with me and my schedule. I also loved how no matter how busy we were it was all about the customers and making sure they had a great experience. I enjoyed my time there because I was able to talk with a bunch of different people and was able to brighten their lives with the small amount of time I received with them. I learned how to multi-task, but use my free time to clean and take care of business that took all my attention. My co-workers were my friends, I was sad to leave because I didn't want to not be able to see them all the time.
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Great for Part-Time
Barista/Supervisor (Current Employee), Fargo, NDJune 6, 2015
Pros: Tips, good scheduling
Cons: Breaks aren't scheduled so they're not guaranteed, mostly young part-timers so meaningless drama can occur
Upon entering the store on an ordinary day, I'm greeted by the manager on duty and briefed as to what has been done and what needs to be done. I'm handed the store keys and get to work. My coworkers are very friendly and I get along well with them. We have set positions, but as supervisor, I have to be flexible. I make drinks, maintain the drip coffee, take orders up front and/or on the drive through, keep the counters clean, restock supplies, weigh out coffee for the next shift, take inventory on the food and pull what needs to be thawed for the next day, count the safe, recount the registers after the deposits have been dropped, wash dishes, clean floors, maintain the lobby, and, of utmost importance, help customers enjoy an exemplary experience at our store.

Everyone is usually very easygoing and understanding when mistakes occur, but I have had to deal with difficult customers when something goes wrong or simply not their way. Luckily, those are rare occurrences and often easily fixed. In situations where I'm unsure of the appropriate action to take, the store manager is easy to reach and always willing to help.

I've learned a lot about time management and multitasking. When first starting, the hardest part about working here is simply learning how to do everything. There's a lot to learn, and if you haven't been in the food industry before, a lot of it can seem overwhelming at first. Once you learn how to do everything, the next step is learning how to look for things to do. There's always something--you just have to know what to look for. And when you get these – more... down, the job is pretty easy from there.

Management is okay. The store manager is great and very understanding when it comes to scheduling and needing to ask for days off (as long as it's done in advance), but the higher up the ladder, the more management expects from stores without understanding how much they're asking.

Workers receive an annual raise. The first two years, the raise will be around $0.50. In the years following, raises usually drop to $0.10-0.20 yearly. This is from my own experience, as well as what I've discussed with former employees.

I've only worked here part-time. I know benefits are available for full-time employees, but I'm not familiar with the policies. – less
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Wonderful job with caribou coffee
Shift Supervisor (Current Employee), Rochester, MNJune 5, 2015
Pros: free shift drink, free half pound coffee/12 teabags every week, tips, stay busy
Cons: sometimes you don't get a break, low pay rate
A wonderul place to work overall! It all depends what kind of work environment you prefer to work in! Fast pace all the time! Keeps you on your feet! I have always loved the people I work with and the regular customers I help every day!
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Need to Caffeine
Senior Store Manager (Current Employee), Minneapolis MNJune 1, 2015
Pros: Free Coffee, off at early time of day
Cons: Long days/weeks, not getting days off, underpaid
As a Store Manager you are held to a typical balance of floor work and administrational duties. The day begins with normal opening procedures including cash handling, machine set up, and expiration check list. The morning rush can be daunting depending on the volume of store. Once into administrational time you are held to normal duties such as scheduling, ordering, hiring, etc. These main responsibilities are fairly normal. What makes this job challenging is the amount of time you are expected to be there and the time of day. When you have to be there by 5am and then are expected to be there till 4pm the day gets long. Free coffee is a great thing, however it is addictive. The upper management has a fair lack of knowledge of what it is like to work the field.This is a major flaw when you have a day to day problem and only your boss is suppose to help you with. You do make some really great bonds with employees and select customers. The trade off is you being home before everyone else but either nodding off or needing to go to bed at way to early of time.
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Big Responsibilites
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Elk River, MNMay 26, 2015
Pros: Being in charge
Cons: Short days
I had a very huge responsibility of employees in my hands, I liked training in new people as well as helping the employees grow.
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Fun environment
Sr. Store Manager (Current Employee), Champlin, MNMay 24, 2015
I think Caribou is a fun place to work for the most part, you get to talk to a bunch of different people and develop relationships with them.
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Friendly neighborhood coffeeshop
Barista (Current Employee), Minneapolis, MNMay 14, 2015
Handcrafted specialty drinks, gained critical customer service skills, coworkers were all great and came from so many different backgrounds.
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Horrible Work Environment for College students
Barista (Former Employee), Duluth, MNApril 27, 2015
Pros: Free shift drinks
Cons: NO breaks.
I learned how to deal with the constant turn-over rate of management and other employees. Do not expect to get your time off granted, even if it is for family events. Extremely stressful work environment with horrible pay. Also, don't expect to receive a break even though you have worked 8 hours, and expect to work many shifts on your OWN.
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Love the casual dress work environment.
Shift Supervisor (Current Employee), Plymouth, MNApril 22, 2015
Give yourself a month to learn the drink combinations! This is a great high school and college job. Flexible hours and possible promotion opportunities.
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Fast-paced environment with coffee at your fingertips at all times!
Shift Supervisor (Current Employee), Hopkins, MNApril 21, 2015
Pros: Free coffee, people interaction, movement, tips
Cons: Pay
A typical day revolves around the service to our guests. Greeting, talking, making connections, assisting, and anticipating customer wants and needs through order fulfillment. During slow times, I use my time to clean, and spiff up the coffeeshop.

This position has offered me many forms of learning as I have held multiple positions. Caribou is the main reason I pursued a B.S. in Business Management. Most of what I learned about management stems from promotions within the organization.

I enjoy working with all my coworkers when work is getting done to standard, but considering I work in a coffeeshop, most of my coworkers are pretty fun and outgoing.

The hardest part about my job is patience. I need to patient with customers, employees, new team members, and upper level management.

I really enjoy the Human Resource perspectives of my position. I sometimes interview candidates, work through our job posting application to sift through potential candidates, and set up interviews. The greatest part about the HR role to me is the fact that I am the one training and developing the employees to do their jobs, and do their jobs well.
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Overall great experience
Lead Team Member (Former Employee), Darien, ILApril 11, 2015
Pros: free coffe
Cons: no breaks
I enjoy Caribou Coffee and it was a perfect place to work at. They were always kind and gave great benefits. I would work there again!
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INSANE Leadership
Director of Product Marketing (Former Employee), Minneapolis, MNApril 9, 2015
Crazy company with horrible management. The few left standing are there only because they are the most vicious at political warfare.
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Fun at first, but goes downhill quickly.
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), MinneapolisApril 6, 2015
Pros: Easy tasks. Free 1/2 pound of coffee per week.
Cons: Constant understaffing, empty promises from management.
I think my experience would have been better had I worked at a regular Caribou, and not a grocery store kiosk Caribou. As a Team Member, it was fine, but once you are a Shift Supervisor, the extra dollar per hour is not worth it. At my location, since it was a grocery store kiosk, they could get away with scheduling just one person on duty, and often did, regardless of the expected traffic that day. What drove me away was the constant stress of being the only one there, which caused slower service during rushes, and then my tips suffered because of it. Also, our store met every sales goal asked of us, and when I left, we had earned three "pizza parties" over the last year, promised by our District Manager, and had not actually been given a single one.

During shifts I had worked at other stores, or on the rare occasion I had a team member, the job was fine. The drinks are easy to make after a few weeks. There are regular customers that I still think about sometimes. The time goes fast, in the right conditions.
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Fun coworkers, fun atmosphere
Team Member (Former Employee), Chicago, ILMarch 31, 2015
Pros: free drinks
Cons: low pay
Went out of business, Great job, coworkers, and clients, Really enjoyed customer interaction and sales. I never dreaded going there.

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About Caribou Coffee

Here at Caribou Coffee, we believe this to be true: that if passion, hard work and excellence go into an endeavor, the outcome – Read more

Caribou Coffee Salaries

Barista
$8.50 per hour
Shift Supervisor
$9.50 per hour
Store Manager
$40,000 per year
Shift Supervisor
$19,000 per year
Barista
$19,000 per year