Pros: consistent work, good coworkers, upscale clientele
Cons: no perks or benefits, benefits offered are usually taken away, low pay, misleading incentives
Massage Envy varies from location to location, as it's a franchise. Many of the employees at the Glendale location, which is the flagship of Los Angeles and one of the oldest locations in the area, had come from other locations with better stories of the work environment. The work is fairly consistent - sometimes, too much so, where you will be overbooked – more... with barely any time to rest or recuperate in between massages. You are able to set a limit of how many hours in a day you can work or how many hours in a row, but oftentimes I was booked over my limit without even time to rest or eat.
When I was hired on, it was with the idea that healthcare benefits would eventually be available. In their job postings, they list healthcare at some locations as a benefit, even though it is not the case (Specifically the Glendale locations lists this in their employment ads even though they don't offer it). They hire people through intentionally misleading posts and interviews. We were also led to believe that we would be making minimum wage at 8/hr when we are not massaging, in addition to the 15/hr when we are working. This was also not the case. As soon as I was hired on, management changed and we were forced to sign tons of new paperwork removing the small perks we had. They offered very small incentives like free massages for doing 12 enhancements, then abruptly changed the way they are handled and people who had earned (EARNED, by WORKING, very hard) these perks then lost them all. Front desk staff gets a free massage once a month although the massage therapists and estheticians do not, even though they are the ones doing the physically demanding work. There is no pay difference between doing a Swedish massage vs a Deep Tissue massage, so most days I was doing back to back deep tissue massages for 15 dollars an hour. Most people tipped ok, but some people did not. It changed from day to day, and I think many of the clients do not realize just how essential tips were to our livelihood.
Other Massage Envy locations offer benefits such as commission bonuses for signing up clients (ours did not) and bi-yearly evaluations with raises (ours did not). There are people who have been working there for years upon years and are still making 15 dollars an hour. Therapists are considered very replaceable there which does not make for a good working environment. There is the hanging fear over your head at all times that you might be let go, and people are fired or quit often because of the working conditions there.
The coworkers and clients are for the most part very, very nice people. Even the managers are very nice people, but are rarely at the location so do not get to see the impact of their rules and regulations on how the location operates and the effect it has on both the clientele and therapists. You are told it is not a sales position, but you are pushed to upsell clients even though you make no commission off it, and clients usually leave smaller tips when they do enhancements because they are paying extra for the services.
You are required to go through their training programs to do pregnancy and hot stone massages. You will be required to perform 6 practical massages for each of these modalities for no pay. They also do not tell you this in advance. You don't even get the 8/hr minimum wage for these.
Massage Envy renews their contracts with clients behind their backs and forces them to come in and sign paperwork in order to stop their contract. They make it purposefully difficult to cut ties with the membership fees.
Often there are more therapists there than there is work, and you will spend hours sitting around making no money. Until people start to get frustrated and quit, then it picks up again for a bit, until they hire on more therapists again...rinse, repeat.
But really, the thing that bothered me the most about working there was how little they care about the safety and comfort of their clients and therapists, both. I had one very creepy client of the sexual harassment type. I requested that I not work on him again, and when looking through his paperwork saw that 3 other therapists had already complained about him. I asked them what it takes for a member to be dropped from Massage Envy, or if they just keep passing the creeps around from therapist to therapists. Their response "Yeah, that's true..." - I did not feel like they cared about my safety or comfort and that the client's 50 dollars a month was more important to them than their therapists not getting molested or harassed. I mean come on. – less