Charlotte Russe / store manager
Hello is what I am going to start by saying. I have so many other words I will say about my current experience with Charlotte Russe. It all started with a very much unprofessional group interview with about 5 shy girls… The Store Manager did not even know how to conduct it in, I asked all the questions. She seemed intimidated and lacking confidence… She hardly provided us with information, basically just said she needed people for the holliday season to start tomorrow----PERFECT FOR MY SITUATION… She seemed sweet and nice…
I was so happy when I got the call back, but not surprised since I was the center of attention of the interview like I said. Every day we were very busy because it was mid December and every shift I was placed in the fitting room… While this period I enjoyed the job, the co workers and the plenty of hours I was getting… I had to accept minimum wage ($7.25 hr) and I have never worked for that low, because my bills are so high, I am bilingual and have a lot of sales experiences. But I figured after the holidays I would get a raise for my hard work…
It seemed like girls called in every day and I was the one covering the shifts… but I was happy to since I am a hard worker and need the money desperately. All these shifts I STILL spent in the fitting room and occasionally in shoes… Those 2 departments are day and night. In the fitting room I spent hours repeating the same few things, opening doors and taking ENDLESS hangers with messed up clothes what they didn’t want. Shoes was heaven, I admired the “Shoe Expert!” . Like I previously mentioned I enjoy to sell, and (I am good at it selling over $50, 000 worth of jewelry for Friedman’s Jewelers in 2007) the girl that would always do shoes did not shine at it like I felt like I did… She ended up never coming in for her shift couple weeks later… guess who came in for her.
Time kept passing and for “Check in” I would keep getting placed in the fitting room… I started to wonder if I was not considered good enough for the sales floor, register, greeter, ANYTHING but the fitting room!!!
The store manager did not care about anything but how she looked when HER bosses came in. She started literally FREAKING OUT ABOUT IT days before, everything and anything was about whoever they were that were coming in… she seemed very scared, apprehensive and nervous. One of the 2 different days the “big bosses” came in I worked for somebody (go figure) in the morning, which I go to school and had never done before. It was akward and weird, before the “big bosses” got there, the Store Manager threaten myself and the other seasonal that if SHE got in trouble, WE got in trouble!!! Well, they came in, and of course I couldn’t wait to introduce myself in hopes of a future advancement or even, raise. The store manager acted like a puppy the whole time they were there. It was pathetic. Few days later another girl needed me to work for her, of course I called my GM to ask her… she denied it because another set of big bosses/owners were going to be there… and that SHE needed to work. Wow, stab in the heart. I represent Charlotte Russe in every shape and form but she didn’t want me to work?! Of course she had to cover her as* and have somebody there and she let me stay until 3 since they wouldn’t be there until 4…. Couple days later there is a note on the board, about how apparently the employees did not meet the customer service level that the “big boss” wanted, and that she would be hiring. I was mad, happy and shocked. I felt like she chose the other girl over me because of her looks, (even though I look damn good myself!) and it backfired on her so it was a “HA!”… but more hiring?! ment less hours… Which this was after Christmas and I still could not make ends meet… Since I am a student, DHS requires 20 working hours a week to qualify… not very much to ask for at a job, and I have always worked over 40 at other places. So when I told her about this and asked her for those 20 guaranteed hours a week, which, with how well I performed and how I thought I proved myself by constantly coming in for others, did not think would get absolutely denied, she got very nervous and said she could not guarantee them. weird enough the next day, I walked to the back as another co worker asked her the SAME thing… and her child-like reply was… “I want food stamps!” over and over again… well, she is very much overweight so it was akward, and rude since it is obviously not by choice that I can’t even afford food. By her acting this way she got off the topic… I looked at my situation: I am foreign with no family help, going to school full time and working somewhere where seems like I am the only person who wants the hours, but the only one not getting them. I figured it was so when others called in I would be available… But the hours on my paychecks never added up to being 20 a week, and I still am not able to get that little bit of help from the government… there is a lot of anger in this. If I am doing something for my future how could DHS have such a harsh and strict rule to help? How could a my Store Manager deny me of that too? All my other jobs I admit that I had attitude with my bosses, all males, but come to find out my Manager is my friend’s sister and boyfriend’s dad’s former deceased Mother. Wow. Well, to make my life harder, my hours the past few weeks and on the current and next schedule are: 9. WOW… what? the only person who cares to come in, who by this time joked to my boyfriend and called myself the “fitting room expert” and who had to put pride aside and ask for more hours because I cant even afford a coke. Is life unfair or am I being taken advantage of? Or does she see how good of an employee I am and is jelouse and does not want me to overshadow her? Around this time is when I realized… I am the only one running back and forth with fitting room ### while she stands around with the other lazy ###. I noticed how last weekend, I took somebody’s shift at 11 am and did not stop for one second until 5:30… Am I the only employee not allowed to have lunch?! Of course she ate… I noticed that day, that she has favorites and we were fairly busy… and she let one of her favorites get off… only so this girl could shop and try on clothes for about 2 hours which we were COMPLETELY slammed but she had the guts to get me to walky her and the other 5-yr-associate over to see how she looked in every outfit… WOW… does this make sense? I was supposed to work 11 am-3 pm for SOMEBODY ELSE, no problem but guess what... ANOTHER lame excuse came over the phone line and was asked to cover somebody else’s shift!! I was so angry inside, I need the money, I cant say no. Im exhausted and starving, fed up with people handing me tons and tons of clothes that I had to put up….. but I did not show any frustration. I realized that I could not show how weak I was at that moment and act like it was no big deal, that I didn’t notice I was the only one who did not get a break, for half a second, to breath. I got my 20 minute break 45 minutes before I was supposed to be off, only to call my boyfriend and all I wanted to do was to cry… is all this worth it? Like I said as soon as I came back I left but was back for the new girl at 7… come to find out she had a weak stomach earlier that day but she “pulled through” and I worked half her shift…. (I have to mention that I have severe GERD and gastiritis, a lot of acid, and not eating makes that acid burn, add bending over several times, I ended up dry-heaving horribly loud and painfully physicaly and embarrassing… this was at closing, when my body had had enough.) so when this girl told her that, again anger and just, disbelief came over me…. I am willing to put my health thru that with no complaints, to anybody, nonetheless call in… and here she is… leaving. I realized I am a total sucker and they got to the point where I was hurting myself when others didn’t care. But she has double the hours, and on her 2nd day already doing real nothing to do with the fitting room. Seeing her checking people out while I folded the rejected clothing made me open my eyes to…something aint right and aint fair!!!
Soon after this we had a meeting, “Does anybody besides the managers know what this meeting is about?” she asked. No answer, but I pay attention, and listen… CUSTOMER SERVICE, I confidently said. “Yes, our secret shopper points are down”… “And us the managers sat down and don’t think anybody here gives it their all, all the time, to not be replaceable. ----STAB TO THE HEART. I realized another thing at that moment, that nothing mattered to her but the outside view of the store, and management. She went on to say that when, and if, the store scores a 100% her and the other managers get $100 gift cards to spend. BUT SHE WOULD GIVE HERS UP TO THE PERSON WHO GETS 100!!!. I was so upset inside, first of all, why would managers that aren’t even working get $100 worth of something they had nothing to do with, and she is so fat she cant fit into anything we carry, so it doesn’t matter to her. She wants the score to have a non-existing image of a perfect customer friendly retail store. I was shocked when she pretty much trained us on how we were supposed to act to customers EVERY time in order to get that perfect score. I realized this was the first and only training I ever got from her. I guess fitting room work is self explanatory.
Well, I realize this is extremely long, and I appologize. Today I had enough. I looked at the schedule wrong and was scheduled 12-5 but thought I worked 3-7. I got a call followed by a text from her demanding explanation to why I was not there!!!. I immediately called her, turns out I looked at next week’s schedule… both weeks 9 hours. She was rude and said I had to be there “ASAP!”. I was angry at the whole situation. If I had any hours instead of blanks maybe I would have a copy at home, but by this time its me only working Friday and Saturday. My boyfriend was there when she called, and he tried to tell me again how can I let her use me like this… But $80 a week is better than no dollars a week, I kept telling myself. I was very scared to go in, I thought she would be so mad because I got there at 1:30, mainly on purpose. She checked me in and was the sweetest person ever, calling me babe and everything. By the way, we weren’t busy. I was extremely relieved that she wasn’t mad, and the shift was going GREAT until little things caught my attention… I had had enough when 5 O clock came, she left and nobody informed me if I had to stay or not. I went and asked. Answer was that I had to stay an hr and a half extra since I was late. THANK YOU FOR LETTING ME KEEP THE 9, but there was no communication from my boss that was long-gone. The new manager was eating in the back, and I brought up this up. Conversation led to my GM not liking that I “TAKE MORE DRINKS FROM THE WATER FOUNTAIN THAN ANYBODY ELSE”, that it “GETS ON HER NERVS THAT I DON’T SPEAK LOUD ENOUGH ON THE WALKIE” and that “BEING LATE IS THE WORST THING EVER TO HER”. I had my mouth open but no words came out because I could not believe that all my hard work was not appreciated, me covering was not appreciated, me suffering from being broke not realized. I can not help I get thirsty cause I run back and forth, unlike anybody else. I had a feeling this was happening so I would make myself go longer periods of time with horrible thirst and dry mouth until I couldn’t take it anymore… how is this normal? Nodody taught me how loud or far to speak into the walky, didn’t even know it was “annoying” and such a big issue. And the tardiness is exaggerated by 1 minute being automatically late.
I went back to the sales floor and thought about this and got even more heated. I told the manager on duty I still needed to talk to her. I told her I cant let anything out because I don’t even understand how they think this is acceptable. well, im done with this story. She couldn’t understand why I was so upset. she told me to go home, 10 minutes early, but I stayed and tried to explain my frustration to the other “right hand” that is actually a very nice girl. I left after appreciating her for always being professional and nice and I left. I got home and told my boyfriend. I realize that none of this matters. to anybody but me, because its my life, my income, my job. I am replaceable and they don’t care about any of this. Im scheduled tomorrow at 3. I don’t know if I will go in or not.
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