To NHS Employees

 

Dear NHS Employees,

above screenshot from @hannahwebs is the ONLY NHS employee outcry I have seen on Social Media! Other people raise their voices regarding the freebies PR for the NHS while Pret tried to cut staff pay and hours! But Hannah is the only NHS worker who spoke out! It is devastating that most only care about their freebies, but not for low-paid Pret staff! My plea to NHS employees at the bottom of this page.

Below is the email by Pano Christou, CEO of Pret A Manger who announced the 25% pay-cut for all employees and 16 hour contracts for front-line staff.

I was sent his email early morning on 19.03.2020 when he sent the email to all shops and HQ. I immediately wrote a blog entry and went on Twitter. Next day after a public outcry and bad press, Pret reversed the decision and announced to go back to 100% pay … BUT said that “we need to continually review our position”:

As a little reminder or introduction for new readers, Pret that was a multi-million pound company until 2018 was sold to the second richest family of Germany Reimann under tax-haven Luxembourg based firm JAB Holdings.

Pret now is a multi-BILLION pound company. The Reimann family are worth €33 BILLION, but Pret decided to steal from low-wage workers to keep stuffing Billionaires.

Some concerned people responded on social media, including a NHS staff’s disgust at Pret’s PR stunt of giving NHS staff freebies and at the same time cutting own staff pay and hours.

2020-03-20 150% rise in profit

 

2020-03-22 Long memory re bad treatment of staff

 

This NHS employee is MY NHS hero / heroine!

2020-03-21 NHS staff1

 

2020-03-21 NHS staff2

Link

 

2020-03-20 Cancel NHS offer pay staff

 

2020-03-21 Putting Workers at risk

 

2020-03-21 Support Tweet to Piers Morgan

 

2020-03-25 Boycott forever

 

2020-03-20 Exposing staff to coronavirus -

 

2020-03-23 Bad treatment of staff

 

etc. etc. etc.

 


 

What Pret staff say for years:

Las Vegas

 

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

 

Go back Pret

 

I was sent a message on 19.03.2020 early morning from a Pret employee about Pret cutting 25% of pay to all staff. Another Pret worker sent me the email that CEO Pano Christou sent to all UK shops and HQ.

I was asked to not post the screenshot of the email but to write a transcript.

In the midst of giving freebies and 50% rebates to NHS workers and cranking up the PR machine again, Pret cuts 25% pay and hours of their low paid staff. Most now work 16 hours per week and get 25% cut on top of it, and are pressured to take holidays and unpaid leave. Do the math of £8.65 per hour how much they get at the end of the week!

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the PR[et] Machine!

I also wrote a blog entry today: “Pret A Clowns” addressing Pano Christou and Clive Schlee as they read my blog. No more sweet-talk!

Pano Christou’s email from 19.03.2020 regarding pay and hour cuts DURING the NHS freebie give-away smokescreen!


 

Dear 75B and UK Shops

In moments of crisis we are challenged on our values and it is important we continue to support each other. People are at the heart of Pret. That’s why our biggest priority as we navigate the impact of Coronavirus is to protect our people. Pret is a wonderful company because it is full of amazingly talented, passionate, kind and generous people. I call it my second home after spending 20 years of my life with such wonderful people who have helped to shape me as a leader, father and a human being.

There are many people losing their jobs from other companies, especially in our sector. Our aim is not lose anyone, because we believe that we are all in this together.

Unfortunately we cannot ignore the fact that our sales in the UK have dropped by 75% and we believe this will be our new reality for several weeks. Therefore we have to reduce our costs somehow.

We are prioritising cuts in all areas that don’t impact our people directly, however it’s vital we also address pay. This means we need to ask every single Pret employee to take a 25% reduction in their contracted hours (and therefore pay). I know this is a huge ask and it breaks my heart to have to get to this point. I know it will hit people hard, but if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time. The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts

We anticipate that our current reduction in sales will continue for at least 3 months and therefore the reduction in hours and associated pay will need to cover this period. If sales improve before then or we receive any further assistance from the government, nothing would make me happier than to be able to reverse this decision more quickly. I will keep you informed.

It goes without saying that if anyone would like to reduce their hours even further (perhaps for personal reasons) or take any period of unpaid absence or sabbatical (even if they haven’t been as Pret for long) then please let the HR team know.

It is important that every single Manager speaks to every single member of their team by Friday 12 noon (20th March) to explain this. There will be lots of questions and following this note the HR team will be sending a list of actions that need to be taken, a letter that needs to be given to every person, and answers to the questions you and your teams may have.

To help our Pret people at this difficult time, we are setting up a Coronavirus Hardship Fund. More details to follow early next week. If any employee needs assistance due to the reduction in their hours then they must ask us for help and we will do all we can to support.

I am fully aware of the impact this change has on us all and I thank you for your understanding.

Take care of yourself and each other.

Pano

 


 

I don’t want to comment too much as I have been writing and tweeting all day on this. But a few things.

Pano writes, quote: “if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time”.

First of all, how about stopping to give freebies to NHS workers and stop the PR, and take care of your own workers! I am all for supporting medical staff, service persons etc. but at THIS time where the virus is spreading and staff don’t know how to survive, Pret cranks up the PR machine again and low-wage workers are paying for it!

And about the job losses, this is the typical Pret manipulation to scare workers into pay-cuts. Pret needs staff more than they want to admit. If Pret was to fire workers and business comes back up again, they would have to employ masses of people and train them fast. Cutting pay and cutting hours, keeping workers will have Pret back on its feet in no time.

Pano: “The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts.”

The Global Leadership Team and Board earn 5 and 6-digit figures #FFS!!! I expect them to make HUGE cuts and keep the workforce at their pay level at the LEAST!

 

Clive £30 million

Link to Daily Mail

 

CEO Dan Price has cut his salary for his workers and his company Gravity Pay is thriving ever since! In 2015 Dan cut his $1.1 million annual pay down to $70K to raise the minimum wage for ALL his staff to $70K. And now his company is pulling together without him having to beg! He will leave a solid legacy behind, built on foundations of truth, integrity and life-changing actions. Dan said he has never regretted it and is happier than ever before. He has a healthy and thriving work environment and many CEOs are following his example! He will not be remembered for the sweet-talk that brings no change for the better and for which Pret is so known for within its own workforce.

Nothing more to say except, shame on Pret for squeezing their low-paid employees even more now, while pretending to sacrifice so much on top levels. Whatever cuts the top management makes on their own pay, they still have millions in the bank! And giving freebies to NHS workers at the same time is a smokescreen, while staff don’t know how to pay the rent! Absolute shame! Pret did the same recently with making plant-based milks free, and then raising the coffee prices at the same time. People always pay, one way or another!

Again, NHS workers DESERVE every bit of a break and support and love we can give them, absolutely! But Pret disregards their own yet again for the sake of PR and to polish up their cracked public image! Shame!

After public pressure and bad press Pret reversed the pay cut back to 100% pay and full 35 hour contracted hours, except for those who already signed a new 16 hour contract! But the reversion will be reviewed on an “ongoing basis” after April!

Quote from Pret:

“We will always put our people first and maintain as many hours and as much pay we can afford”. – Pret A Manger under Pano Christou (and Clive Schlee) under JAB Holdings / Reimann worth €33 Billion. “As much as we can afford”.

“We always put our people first”.

Really?

  • PR stunt giving NHS staff freebies
  • While cutting Pret staff PAY of 25% & hours down to 16 hours
  • Putting measures in place for customers 2B safe
  • NO care for staff in close proximity to each other

 

2020-03-23 100%

 

My plea to NHS employees

Apart from your joy of getting free coffees, 50% off food and food donations, praising Pret as an ethical company: why don’t you stand up for low-wage Pret employees who pay the price for Pret’s marketing, while top executives earn millions and JAB Holdings sit on billions!

Don’t let Hannah be the only NHS staff to have spoken out after NHS workers received freebies. 50% rebates and food donations!

Pret will try to cut pay and hours again, even when business is back to normal. I know Pret, they use any-and everything to avoid paying staff. Two class-action suits have been settled in New York when Pret had to repay 4000 workers!

2016-03-17 Pret will do anything not to pay - RVW9823882

Link

 

To all Pret employees:

JOIN A UNION!

These two Unions are very active and the best informed on Pret issues:

iwgb.org.uk
Twitter: @IWGBunion

www.bfawu.org
Twitter: @bfawu1

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Pret A Manger bows to Public Pressure & the Press

 

Quote:

“We will always put our people first and maintain as many hours and as much pay we can afford”. – Pret A Manger under Pano Christou (and Clive Schlee) under JAB Holdings / Reimann worth €33 Billion. “As much as we can afford”.

“We always put our people first”.

Really?

 

 

-PR stunt giving NHS staff freebies

-While cutting Pret staff PAY & Hours

-Putting measures in place for customers 2B safe

-NO care for staff in close proximity to each other

 

Below is the email by Pano Christou, CEO of Pret A Manger who announced the 25% pay-cut for all employees and 16 hour contracts for front-line staff.

I was sent his email early morning and immediately wrote a blog entry and went on Twitter. Next day after a public outcry and bad press, Pret reversed and announced to go back to 100% pay … BUT … “we need to continually review our position”:

 

2020-03-23 100%

 

As a little reminder or introduction for new readers, Pret that was a multi-million pound company until 2018 was sold to the second richest company of Germany, Reimann under tax haven Luxembourg based firm JAB Holdings.

Pret now is a multiBILLION pound company. The Reimann family are worth €33 BILLION, but Pret decided to steal from low-wage workers to keep stuffing Billionaires.

Some concerned people including a NHS staff disgust at Pret’s PR stunt of giving NHS staff freebies and at the same time cutting own staff pay and hours.

2020-03-20 150% rise in profit

 

2020-03-21 NHS staff1

 

2020-03-21 NHS staff2

 

2020-03-20 Cancel NHS offer pay staff

 

2020-03-21 Putting Workers at risk

 

2020-03-21 Support Tweet to Piers Morgan

 


 

Below email from Pano Christou.

 

Las Vegas

 

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

 

Go back Pret

 

I was sent a message on 18.03.2020 from a Pret employee about Pret cutting 25% of pay to all staff. Another Pret worker sent me the email that CEO Pano Christou sent to all UK shops and HQ this morning (19.03.2020).

I was asked to not post the screenshot of the email but to write a transcript.

In the midst of giving freebies and 50% rebates to NHS workers and cranking up the PR machine again, Pret cuts 25% pay and hours of their low paid staff. Most now work 16 hours per week and get 25% cut on top of it, and are pressured to take holidays and unpaid leave. Do the math of £8.65 per hour how much they get at the end of the week!

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the PR[et] Machine!

I also wrote a blog entry today: “Pret A Clowns” addressing Pano Christou and Clive Schlee as they read my blog. No more sweet-talk!

Pano Christou’s email from 18.03.2020 early morning:

 


 

Dear 75B and UK Shops

In moments of crisis we are challenged on our values and it is important we continue to support each other. People are at the heart of Pret. That’s why our biggest priority as we navigate the impact of Coronavirus is to protect our people. Pret is a wonderful company because it is full of amazingly talented, passionate, kind and generous people. I call it my second home after spending 20 years of my life with such wonderful people who have helped to shape me as a leader, father and a human being.

There are many people losing their jobs from other companies, especially in our sector. Our aim is not lose anyone, because we believe that we are all in this together.

Unfortunately we cannot ignore the fact that our sales in the UK have dropped by 75% and we believe this will be our new reality for several weeks. Therefore we have to reduce our costs somehow.

We are prioritising cuts in all areas that don’t impact our people directly, however it’s vital we also address pay. This means we need to ask every single Pret employee to take a 25% reduction in their contracted hours (and therefore pay). I know this is a huge ask and it breaks my heart to have to get to this point. I know it will hit people hard, but if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time. The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts

We anticipate that our current reduction in sales will continue for at least 3 months and therefore the reduction in hours and associated pay will need to cover this period. If sales improve before then or we receive any further assistance from the government, nothing would make me happier than to be able to reverse this decision more quickly. I will keep you informed.

It goes without saying that if anyone would like to reduce their hours even further (perhaps for personal reasons) or take any period of unpaid absence or sabbatical (even if they haven’t been as Pret for long) then please let the HR team know.

It is important that every single Manager speaks to every single member of their team by Friday 12 noon (20th March) to explain this. There will be lots of questions and following this note the HR team will be sending a list of actions that need to be taken, a letter that needs to be given to every person, and answers to the questions you and your teams may have.

To help our Pret people at this difficult time, we are setting up a Coronavirus Hardship Fund. More details to follow early next week. If any employee needs assistance due to the reduction in their hours then they must ask us for help and we will do all we can to support.

I am fully aware of the impact this change has on us all and I thank you for your understanding.

Take care of yourself and each other.

Pano

 


 

I don’t want to comment too much as I have been writing and tweeting all day on this. But a few things.

Pano writes, quote: “if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time”.

First of all, how about stopping to give freebies to NHS workers and stop the PR, and take care of your own workers! I am all for supporting medical staff, service persons etc. but at THIS time where the virus is spreading and staff don’t know how to survive, Pret cranks up the PR machine again and low-wage workers are paying for it!

And about the job losses, this is the typical Pret manipulation to scare workers into pay-cuts. Pret needs staff more than they want to admit. If Pret was to fire workers and business comes back up again, they would have to employ masses of people and train them fast. Cutting pay and cutting hours, keeping workers will have Pret back on its feet in no time.

Pano: “The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts.”

The Global Leadership Team and Board earn 5 and 6-digit figures #FFS!!! I expect them to make HUGE cuts and keep the workforce at their pay level at the LEAST!

 

Clive £30 million

Link to Daily Mail

 

CEO Dan Price has cut his salary for his workers and his company Gravity Pay is thriving ever since! In 2015 Dan cut his $1.1 million annual pay down to $70K to raise the minimum wage for ALL his staff to $70K. And now his company is pulling together without him having to beg! He will leave a solid legacy behind, built on foundations of truth, integrity and life-changing actions. Dan said he has never regretted it and is happier than ever before. He has a healthy and thriving work environment and many CEOs are following his example! He will not be remembered for the sweet-talk that brings no change for the better and for which Pret is so known for within its own workforce.

Nothing more to say except, shame on Pret for squeezing their low-paid employees even more now, while pretending to sacrifice so much on top levels. Whatever cuts the top management makes on their own pay, they still have millions in the bank! And giving freebies to NHS workers at the same time is a smokescreen, while staff don’t know how to pay the rent! Absolute shame! Pret did the same recently with making plant-based milks free, and then raising the coffee prices at the same time. People always pay, one way or another!

Again, NHS workers DESERVE every bit of a break and support and love we can give them, absolutely! But Pret disregards their own yet again for the sake of PR and to polish up their cracked public image! Shame!

 

To all Pret employees:

JOIN A UNION!

These two Unions are very active and the best informed on Pret issues:

iwgb.org.uk
Twitter: @IWGBunion

www.bfawu.org
Twitter: @bfawu1

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Pret’s Covid-19 FUCK – sorry FAQs!

 

The following is Pret A Manger’s “How to Card” on the Coronavirus and how they UN-pay their staff during quarantine.

The worker who sent this to me highlighted the pay issues, I added the underline.

I want to say thank you to the Pret employees who sent this and other information on.

I want to tell you that you are courageous, strong and wonderful people. I wish worked with you in my wasted time at Pret. 

I’ve never met some of you, but I miss the likes of you!

 


 

Pret A Manger’s FUCK

 

Covid-19 FAQs

Who should respond to customer queries about Coronavirus?

Please refer all questions to the MOD. MODs can use this Q&A to answer any customer questions and if unsure of the correct answer, please refer the customer to our Customer Service team.

If you are contacted by a member of the press, then please refer them to press@pret.com

Will Pret be going ahead with any planned events?

We have taken advice and can confirm that May QB will not go ahead. Friday Night Drinks will be postponed until further notice. The Summer Party will also be postponed. We will continue to monitor the situation and update you all on events planned for later this year. 

One of my team have just returned from Spain / Italy / China, should they self-isolate?

As per government advice, people should only self-isolate if they have been in close contact with someone confirmed to have Coronavirus (14 days), if they live in a household with someone who has symptoms or has symptoms themselves (14 days) or if they have any symptoms of Coronavirus themselves and live alone (7 days). If symptoms develop or worsen during that timeframe then they should call 111 to seek professional advice.

One of my team has travelled to another country and are now not able to get a flight back to the UK – what should I process this as?

This should be processed on Workday as unpaid authorized absence.  However, if the Team Member would like to get paid for this time, they can borrow up to 5 days holiday from next years’ entitlement.

One of my team say they feel unsafe coming to work and they would like to self-isolate.

Self-isolation only needs to take place if the TM has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Coronavirus, or if they have any symptoms of Coronavirus themselves. Pret would not ask someone to work in an environment that we deemed unsafe and we are following all guidance to help prevent the spread of the virus. If a Team Member does not feel comfortable coming to work, then this should be processed as unpaid authorised absence.

One of my team is living with someone who is self-isolating – do they also need to self-isolate?

anyone who lives with others and they themselves or one of the household has symptoms of coronavirus, then all household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill

anyone in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14 day isolation period.

One of my TMs has asthma, so always has a cough / difficulty breathing, do they need to self-isolate?

No, TMs will only need to self-isolate if they have developed a recent cough, temperature or difficultly breathing. If this is an on-going health problem they do not need to self-isolate.

When should a TM self-isolate and for how long?

If a TM lives alone, they must self-isolate for 7 days from the start of having symptoms.

If a TM lives with others, they must self-isolate for 14 days from the start of anyone in the household showing symptoms including themselves.

Why 14 days if you live with others? It is likely that people living within a household will infect each other or may already be infected. Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community.

Anyone who starts displaying symptoms while already being in the 14 days self-isolation period must stay at home for at least 7 days from the start of their own symptoms. E.g. if you were in the 12th day of self-isolation when your symptoms appeared, you will yourself need to self-isolate for 7 days from that date. Making your self-isolation a total of 19 days.

 


 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

 

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

 

Pret A Manger Pay-cut – FULL CEO Email

 

Las Vegas

 

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

 

Go back Pret

 

I was sent a message this morning from a Pret employee about Pret cutting 25% of pay to all staff. Another Pret worker sent me the email that CEO Pano Christou sent to all UK shops and HQ this morning (19.03.2020).

I was asked to not post the screenshot of the email but to write a transcript.

In the midst of giving freebies and 50% rebates to NHS workers and cranking up the PR machine again, Pret cuts 25% pay and hours of their low paid staff. Most now work 16 hours per week and get 25% cut on top of it, and are pressured to take holidays and unpaid leave. Do the math of £8.65 per hour how much they get at the end of the week!

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the PR[et] Machine!

I also wrote a blog entry today: “Pret A Clowns” addressing Pano Christou and Clive Schlee as they read my blog. No more sweet-talk!

Pano Christou’s email this morning:

 


 

Dear 75B and UK Shops

In moments of crisis we are challenged on our values and it is important we continue to support each other. People are at the heart of Pret. That’s why our biggest priority as we navigate the impact of Coronavirus is to protect our people. Pret is a wonderful company because it is full of amazingly talented, passionate, kind and generous people. I call it my second home after spending 20 years of my life with such wonderful people who have helped to shape me as a leader, father and a human being.

There are many people losing their jobs from other companies, especially in our sector. Our aim is not lose anyone, because we believe that we are all in this together.

Unfortunately we cannot ignore the fact that our sales in the UK have dropped by 75% and we believe this will be our new reality for several weeks. Therefore we have to reduce our costs somehow.

We are prioritising cuts in all areas that don’t impact our people directly, however it’s vital we also address pay. This means we need to ask every single Pret employee to take a 25% reduction in their contracted hours (and therefore pay). I know this is a huge ask and it breaks my heart to have to get to this point. I know it will hit people hard, but if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time. The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts

We anticipate that our current reduction in sales will continue for at least 3 months and therefore the reduction in hours and associated pay will need to cover this period. If sales improve before then or we receive any further assistance from the government, nothing would make me happier than to be able to reverse this decision more quickly. I will keep you informed.

It goes without saying that if anyone would like to reduce their hours even further (perhaps for personal reasons) or take any period of unpaid absence or sabbatical (even if they haven’t been as Pret for long) then please let the HR team know.

It is important that every single Manager speaks to every single member of their team by Friday 12 noon (20th March) to explain this. There will be lots of questions and following this note the HR team will be sending a list of actions that need to be taken, a letter that needs to be given to every person, and answers to the questions you and your teams may have.

To help our Pret people at this difficult time, we are setting up a Coronavirus Hardship Fund. More details to follow early next week. If any employee needs assistance due to the reduction in their hours then they must ask us for help and we will do all we can to support.

I am fully aware of the impact this change has on us all and I thank you for your understanding.

Take care of yourself and each other.

Pano

 


 

I don’t want to comment too much as I have been writing and tweeting all day on this. But a few things.

Pano writes, quote: “if we can achieve this, we can avoid job losses at this time”.

First of all, how about stopping to give freebies to NHS workers and stop the PR, and take care of your own workers! I am all for supporting medical staff, service persons etc. but at THIS time where the virus is spreading and staff don’t know how to survive, Pret cranks up the PR machine again and low-wage workers are paying for it!

And about the job losses, this is the typical Pret manipulation to scare workers into pay-cuts. Pret needs staff more than they want to admit. If Pret was to fire workers and business comes back up again, they would have to employ masses of people and train them fast. Cutting pay and cutting hours, keeping workers will have Pret back on its feet in no time.

Pano: “The Global Leadership Team and Board will be taking bigger cuts.”

The Global Leadership Team and Board earn 5 and 6-digit figures #FFS!!! I expect them to make HUGE cuts and keep the workforce at their pay level at the LEAST!

 

Clive £30 million

Link to Daily Mail

 

CEO Dan Price has cut his salary for his workers and his company Gravity Pay is thriving ever since! In 2015 Dan cut his $1.1 million annual pay down to $70K to raise the minimum wage for ALL his staff to $70K. And now his company is pulling together without him having to beg! He will leave a solid legacy behind, built on foundations of truth, integrity and life-changing actions. Dan said he has never regretted it and is happier than ever before. He has a healthy and thriving work environment and many CEOs are following his example! He will not be remembered for the sweet-talk that brings no change for the better and for which Pret is so known for within its own workforce.

Nothing more to say except, shame on Pret for squeezing their low-paid employees even more now, while pretending to sacrifice so much on top levels. Whatever cuts the top management makes on their own pay, they still have millions in the bank! And giving freebies to NHS workers at the same time is a smokescreen, while staff don’t know how to pay the rent! Absolute shame! Pret did the same recently with making plant-based milks free, and then raising the coffee prices at the same time. People always pay, one way or another!

Again, NHS workers DESERVE every bit of a break and support and love we can give them, absolutely! But Pret disregards their own yet again for the sake of PR and to polish up their cracked public image! Shame!

 

To all Pret employees:

JOIN A UNION!

These two Unions are very active and the best informed on Pret issues:

www.bfawu.org

Twitter: @bfawu1

 

iwgb.org.uk

Twitter: @IWGBunion

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

 

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Pret A Clowns

 

Las Vegas

 

To Pano Christou & Clive Schlee,

Clive Schlee, I know you are not the CEO anymore, even though you still present yourself on Twitter as such. You are a non-executive director and I’m sure pretty active in the background. Thank you for your visit yesterday to my blog, I hope you found something useful to inspire REAL change, not just sweet-talk.

Pano Christou, as you have deleted your Twitter account on 01. July 2019 after I tweeted Clive’s retirement news to the press as you didn’t see the need to inform them yourself (you’re welcome!) I write yet again another blog post.

You have done your typical PR stunt yet again with much success of course. It is very commendable to give free coffees and 50% rebate on food to NHS workers. Everyone agrees, it’s very nice. And NHS staff, Fire Brigade, indeed all carers deserve every break they can get! But …

I tweeted yesterday already to NHS staff that Pret workers are paying for this “generosity” by being sent home unpaid due to low business, as I know how you work. And of course I got shadow banned (censored, Tweets hidden from public view and search).

And then you dropped a bombshell this morning in an email to the shops.

I now have messages coming in on various channels that you even go further in your generosity. This morning you emailed shops wanting all your staff to agree to take 25% pay cuts for up to 3 months or more, or to take unpaid leave.

You already want to force staff to take holidays above their current holiday allowance, and they will then lose their holidays for next year.

You promised your employees you will send DAILY communications to shops on developments in Pret during this terrible virus crisis. Yet, in your typical Pret-style of breaking promises, so far you’ve only sent 2 pieces of information to shops:

  1. That cutlery now has to be moved behind the counter and regular sanitizing, hand-washing etc. (Of course you bowed to pressure from the public on this, whereas before you didn’t give a toss!)
  2. Your typical self-idolizing PR stunt, sending press releases on freebies and 50% rebate for NHS workers. And Pret workers are speechless how they themselves are disregarded! One Pret staff called this your typical “PR machine”. Other staff are cursing you out, I can’t repeat here!

 

I wrote in my other blog post 2 days ago about your Vague Statement and non-specific sweet-talk on precautions during the Coronavirus pandemic. I wrote that Clive should cut his £30 million bonus and give to the workers, so they can pay their rent and not end up on the street and have tax payers pick up the bill!

 

Clive £30 million

 

A courageous act CEO Dan Price has done for his workers, and his company is thriving ever since! Dan Price cut his $1.1 million annual pay down to $70K to raise the minimum wage for ALL his staff to $70K. He will leave a solid legacy behind, built on foundations of truth, integrity and life-changing actions. Dan said he has never regretted it and is happier than ever before. He has healthy and thriving employees! He will not be remembered for the bullshit sweet-talk that brings no change for the better and for which Pret is so known for within its own workforce.

And you have the Pret Foundation Trust that helps homeless people, don’t you? But we former and current Pret staff know it’s mostly for PR! Where is your help, Pano?! Wanting staff to agree to a pay cut of 25% and go on forced holiday which they will then lose the following year? Really?

 

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

 

And if they refuse to take holidays they are bullied by managers and sent into the kitchen or do extra cleaning work. Yes, that does sound very Pret-like! And you sit on millions of pounds and your JAB bosses sit on billions.

You, Pano Chrsitou and all the shareholders could also cut your Million pound salaries and bonuses, to actually do the right thing “naturally”, as Pret always claimed. But you just send little emails about cutlery and your NHS PR stunt. And your low-wage workers are speechless and scared shit-less for their lives, jobs and homes!

“It’s what makes Pret, Pret”

 

PretDoingRightThingHaHa

Your staff who are sending these infos to me are disheartened and disgusted at your lack of care and your greed. And I am disgusted that you Pano even use your own child, to manipulate your employees to cut their own needs, so you can continue in your millionaire lifestyle and keep feeding your billionaire bosses Reimann / JAB Holdings!

You know what this reminds me of? Pret having used Lila Warren who supposedly had a brother who died alone in his apartment and wasn’t found for days, just like my brother! Lila then gaslighting and manipulating me until I got fired. If Lila’s story is true or not is not my concern anymore.

But for you Pano, to use your own child to gaslight and manipulate workers to take cuts is utterly perverse and disgusting! You write to shops that your child has asthma and is crying all day not wanting to go to school! Two years ago you emailed back a customer, who complained about the lack of labelling and their fear about allergens after the two customers died. You wrote to the customer that your child has food allergies, and that you know how it is!

I really hope your children have no illnesses and allergies, I even hope you are lying like you all did with Lila Warren. But to produce crocodile tears to make low-wage employees feel sorry for you, using your children’s health condition is utterly disgusting and disturbing! You should be more than ashamed of yourself, Pano! You should have the decency and backbone to not only refrain from using your children in any way to manipulate workers to feel bad, but you should pay them a living wage, protect their jobs, give up some of your own millions and get to work!

You “advise” staff to sign a 25% pay cut, and yet your Managers are pressuring, manipulating and gaslighting workers to sign. Pano, you said that all of you in management are also taking a pay cut, sorry, but you still have MILLIONS left even after a pay cut! You manipulate your staff by saying that other companies are firing people. You say that you don’t fire them but you gaslight them with this “generosity” of a 25% cut!

I have one sentence for Pret A Manger low-wage workers:
PRET NEEDS YOU MORE THAN YOU NEED THEM! WAKE UP!

And for Pret leadership, you should be ashamed as millionaires to “ask” low-wage staff via pressuring and manipulating Managers, to sign a 25% pay-cut and use next years holiday allowance for this year, while giving free coffees and 50% rebates to NHS staff whose job are secure and have FULL wages! You should be deeply and utterly ashamed Pano Christou, Clive Schlee, and the rest of you greedy share holders! And using freebies to NHS workers for your PR, and then letting low-wage staff foot the bill is beyond disgusting! You should be ashamed!

The only good thing about all this is, as your hard working people are even in deeper financial and existential despair now, more and more are joining unions, and they are coming for you!  🙂  ← That’s a real smile not even the Mystery Shopper could have gotten out of me!

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

 

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Versus Pret A Manger

 

ET3 Response Excerpt Schlee Warren

 

Lila Warren BACP

Lila Tighilt Warren

#PretAManger

#CliveSchlee

#PanoChristou

#NickDavis

#DavidCarter

#AndreaWareham

 

This is a man’s world.

 

Ready to eat?

 

#SpotStop

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
An incomplete list on what other Pret staff say about Pret’s bullying environment:
Caught in the Act Bullying at Pret.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

 

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

What makes Pret A Manger Extra Responsible?

 

Having a face.

And seeing a face in front of them.

Look at these beautiful, clean, rich, white, smiley faces.

Look at them.

Aren’t they beautiful?

Ready to eat?

Just a feast to look at, hey.

They are right now in their homes, or on the golf course, or on holiday in the mountains, or shopping for a new mortgage.

They cradle their kids and chase their dogs. They eat and shit and drink wine, like you and I.

Their wine and their toilet paper is just a little more expensive than yours and mine. Why?

Oh … don’t ask…

don’t ask.

 

Annihilate Humanity 45

Link

GM

Link

2020-02-10 DC - Fired due to pregnancy

Link

 

What makes Pret A Manger responsible (and inexcusable in their actions)?

 

Once they got to know me,
once they saw and heard me,
once I had a face to look at,
a voice to listen to,
a feature,
having been a person in front of them,
not just some faceless number far away on the shop floor;
once I was a tangible human being before their eyes
they still, they STILL decided that I was in the way of profit …
and with that, all my fellow human beings that digg’d the dirt for these arrogant people… are in their way

 

You are beautiful, white, rich, educated assholes who spit on those who pay your rent.

Let me repeat.

You are ugly, white trash, lacking emotional intelligence and care, you shit on those who pay your rent.

You are greedy insecure cowards, and you skipped out once the wolves of private equity came in.

You made a decision Clive Schlee.

The decision you made was many years ago, when you and your friends, Sinclair Beecham and Julian Metcalfe got your heads together and had this bright idea that you would be the king of the high-street.

And Clive Schlee, Pano Chrsitou, Nick Davis, David Carter, Lila Warren … I know you sleep well.

You know why I know you sleep well?

Because you are angels of light.

Good night.

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

My 2 Articles in the Scottish Left Review

 

1. On the frontline: crushed by corporate capitalist culture
(May/June 2019)

2. Pushing back against Pret – making headway against malevolent management
(Nov/Dec 2019)

 

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

Glassdoor

2020-02-11 Pano 35 39

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints.
And extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, also witnessed by customers: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Employees are the Blood of the Company

 

»It’s amazing to me how many business leaders separate their employees from their customers/patrons. Your employees are your core target audience to put word-of-mouth out about your organization.«

 — @minmilyjung

 

2018-06-13 Hellhole - RVW21022161

Link

 

Clive Schlee “retired” with a legacy on Glassdoor & Co where staff dare to speak bluntly without fear:

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

 

2020-01-22 Pano 39 34

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Pret A Manger Head Office Reviews

 

London Victoria HQ reviews from various departments, as well as some corporate reviews from New York.

 

HQ Bullies

Link People don’t seem to get promoted unless you are a bully or belittle your team members. The place is toxic.

 

2019-01-23 Great Brand Poor Management - RVW24352473 marked

Link

 

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

Link

 

NEW

2020-01-05 HQ Customer Service Team review

Link  The company doesn’t support their employees and think that it is okay for their employees to belittle, bully and intimidate team members as well as ostracise them from the entire team. … the actual manager of the CS Team was lovely but everything was out of her hands…

 

Las Vegas

Link

01 Go back to UK

Review by a Corporate, NY

 

17 Odd

Review by former purchasing Director, NY

 

2017-05-26 Pure Misery

Link “This place is what hell must be like.”

 

My own experience with Pret’s HQ was when HR used a Development Manager to gaslight me. She supposedly had a brother who died and was not discovered for 10 days in his flat, like my brother died and was 6 days not discovered.

Link to article: Lila Tighilt Warren and her Brother Zain ~~~ and ~~~ Lila Warren, David Carter, Clive Schlee. My full story with Pret is in an interview at the bottom audio player on a podcast based in California.

In a nutshell: Pret A Manger is a very toxic, corrupt and bullying company behind that “happy” facade.

 

Former CEO Clive Schlee’s legacy, Glassdoor:

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

 

New CEO Pano Christou:

2020-01-05 Pano 40 36

Link

 

The following Unions cover the food industry (links to Twitter):

BFAWU1 and IWGB are the best informed about Pret — McStrike (UK) — Fast Food Forward (USA) — GMB Union — and others. The BFAWU is very active with McDonald’s strikes and with IWGB are the best informed about Pret A Manger issues.

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2020 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Day 24: The 3 Vice Men – Kneeling at Pret A Manger

 

Day 24 of >>> Away in Pret A Manger Ad-VENT Calendar

Merry Christmas, if you can!

Let the Fools NOT be with you!

 

 

organic-coffin-natural-fools-1.jpg

 

What Managers and Corporate employees, including Head Office staff, say about Pret throughout the years and in various cities/countries (only few of many reviews and comments):

Go back Pret

Link

2012 Ex GM ExGM Ex-GM

Blogspot –  4 years after Bridgepoint took over.

Mafia

Link

HQ

HQ London 2017

HQ BulliesHQ London 2019

Managers cry

Leader Review on abusive Area Manager – Shop Managers crying in the office.

I could go and on with countless more reviews along those lines, but I want to put only one more that broke my heart. I was actually crying when I read this because it triggered so much pain I’ve been through and seen colleagues go through. For a longer, but not exhaustive list of staff reviews and complains: >>>

GM slavery

Manager review London, October 2019

Ruin

Manager Review 2014 – 6 years after Bridgepoint took over.

So, who are the 3 Vice Men?

  • Pano Christupido (Current Fool who deleted his Twitter account after my blog entry on Clive Schlee’s “retirement” in July 2019)
  • Clive Leech (Former Fool who, with full steam ahead ran the Titanic into an iceberg, but continues to present himself as CEO of Pret. Pscht! He’s in denial!)
  • David Cartel (The Fixer – he’s out and about on behalf of the CEO putting out fires and seeing to it that hardworking people get fired)

 

Pret_Dwarfs

Pano Christo (left), Clive Schlee

David Cartel

David Carter, HR Fixer

»Any damn fool can run Pret!«

Oh no, those are not my words! Those are the words of the wife of Pret A Manger’s now former CEO Clive Schlee, who “retired” in September 2019!

 

My wife always would say, ‘any damn fool can run Pret

Clive Wife

From a 2016 Guardian interview

The problem with companies that have fools running it is, they may endanger their clients’ and employees’ lives. God forbid customers number 1. die, number 2. the company doesn’t do anything until these fatalities become public, and 3. get away with it!

And God forbid that this company gets away with not one, but two customer deaths, a third nearly fatal allergy reaction, and numerous hospitalized …

And God forbid even further that staff struggle and suffer, some dying, even by suicide.

Of course who would think that a CEO would sneak out quietly into early retirement, remaining a non-executive Director in the background, working on fixing his reputation with some more charity work and finally reaching out to low-paid workers?

What company would have a fool running its business and ruin a lot of people’s lives?

Good thing the facade of Pret is still in tact! Let the free coffees flow to put the public back to sleep!

That’s all that counts these days. Cheap freebies people settle for.

So, »any damn fool can run Pret!«. Sure. And certainly any damn fool can ruin it!

I want to say again that Pret A Manger is NOT what they portray to the public!

 

2016 Review.jpg

Link “the general public view of this company is very far off from the truth”

 

2019 Review GM

Link Manager Review

 

Legacy of a Fool: 

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

Glassdoor July 2019

One of my many articles about and to Clive Schlee, one of which I dedicate to his farewell gift:

Foot-In-Mouth Disease at Pret A Manger

New CEO, Pano Christou about whom I write about in: Under New Management. But Clive Schlee remains in the background as Non-executive Director pulling the strings under JAB Holdings.

2019-10-02 Pano 38 26

Smile Pano! Smile!

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be pause

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints

I continue to ask for independent investigations into staff suicides!

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2019 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Day 22: Clive Schlee’s Late Night Girl – Articles

 

Day 22 of >>> Away in Pret A Manger Ad-VENT Calendar

 

Clive Schlee’s “Late Night Girl’s” Writings.

For any new reader, my full story in an interview at the bottom of this page on the audio player.

For a comprehensive list of writings about Pret A Manger, please visit:
>>> The Most Comprehensive Website on Pret A Manger

Since Clive Schlee, now former CEO of Pret labelled me his “late night girl”, I return the favour and call him Clive Leech. This label was inspired by a recent staff review, plus all the many other reviews and my experience of Pret being exploitative and sucking the life-blood out of employees. Review: >>> Leeches <<<

I said in early 2019 to a Union person that Clive Schlee will probably sneak out of Pret. And days ago I wrote to another person that he is very quiet lately and either on a Sabbatical or leaving.

 


 

My blog entry on the 01. July 2019:

I tweeted to the press this morning, and of course now they have “breaking” news 😉 He since has now tweeted his announcement himself AFTER I contacted the press and they “broke” the news.

~10am Tweet before the press started waking up:

2019-07-01 My Schlee retirement Tweet

Link

 


 

To Clive Schlee,

unfortunately your early retirement you chose not to announce and I had to tweet again for the press to pick this up. Sure, Pano Christou will take over, having come from McDonald’s management (nobody’s perfect!) he will continue where you left off. Pano became UK Managing Director after Andrew Walker “left”. Andrew Walker then became EAT’s CEO which is now swallowed by JAB via Pret. What a cold cold business! It may be good for the press to properly investigate on the Andrew Walker issue!

Pano will do some changes of course, but from his emails years ago, he wasn’t straight forward with me either, and I’m afraid Pret will continue business as usual with a lot of the chaos behind the scenes.

I’m sure you’ve done a lot of good things and many will sing your praises. But for me and many others this PR[et] facade and the reality behind the scenes has been a terrible “ride” and the worst, traumatic experience I have ever had in any workplace! Only my brother’s untimely death supersedes this trauma in an even greater nightmare!

I always shuddered when as a shop Team Leader, working in the office doing the ordering or whatever I had to do, when an email from HQ came in. And that email was sent out naming, blaming and shaming shops that had poor scoring in Health & Safety or other issues. This fear management, also to your low-paid workers via Mystery Shoppers, was always a terrible experience to read and witness.

And you think you can just sneak out of Pret, not taking any responsibility?

I worked in the catering industry all my life, in 3 countries. I never shied away from hard work and was self-sufficient since my teenage years. I lived and worked with integrity, principle and care. And what I received in return was humiliation, trauma, and discrimination. You need to understand that Pret A Manger under your leadership has almost destroyed my life, literally almost killed me!

I survived Pret, which I experienced as toxic, corrupt and exploitative.

You can count yourself very lucky, Mr. Schlee, that my mental health is too low to see through to court without a lawyer and my father having died in the middle of preparation for the Tribunal claim I had to withdraw!

And this is YOUR legacy, sir. And I can never write any other story-line, as much as I miss my old life of writing with encouragement and positivity, having given the benefit of the doubt to you one too many times. Those days are gone when it comes to Pret A Manger!

I’m sure by now with all my writings that you have read (you still haven’t blocked me on Twitter as you collect for a potential court case or to ruin my future further! Pano Christou blocked me and today he closed his @christoupano account!), but I’m sure by now you have learned of amazing CEOs like Guy Singh-Watson from Riverford, or Hamdi Ulukaya, founder and CEO of Chobani who revolutionize the business world. I hope you learn from them, not just for the typical Pret facade and fake smile you are so known for. But a full turn around to make a true difference in the LIVES of HUMAN BEINGS that labour and give their sweat, blood and tears so that you can count your millions!

I am proud to have declined four settlement offers in turn for silence! I have many regrets, but not this one!

Wishing you good luck?

I wish that you would for once take responsibility, sir!

I wish that you would be taken to court for what people have suffered under you!

Regards,

Your “Late Night Girl” – 01. July 2019


Clive Schlee’s Legacy:

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

Glassdoor July 2019

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

 

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints

 

LINK: TWO Pret Staff have died
1 is said to be a suicide.
It’s not the first suicide in Pret.

 


 

 

21. Sep. 2019
Pret A Manger has a New Fool

23. Sep. 2019
Smile, Fool!

01. Sep. 2019
Foot-in-Mouth Disease at Pret

08. July 2019
Any Damn Fool can run Pret

 


 

While the Press was fast asleep:

01. July 2019 approx. 3am post
Clive Schlee’s Legacy

 

30. June 2019
The Captain of the Ship

 

20. June 2019
Where is Clive Schlee?

 

18. June 2019
Clive Schlee’s Soldiers – My suspicion that he would be leaving!

 

03. April 2019
The Timing of Clive Schlee’s £1000 Announcement

 

16. Nov. 2018
Clive Schlee’s Crocodile Tears – His negligence on customer warnings regarding allergen labelling

 

08. Dec. 2018
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: to Clive Schlee

 

17. Feb, 2019
Pret’s Unprofessional Twitter Staff incl. Clive Schlee

 

02. Apr. 2019
Clive Schlee, Pano Christou

 

08. Aug. 2018
An IMAGINARY but Honest Interview with Pret A Manger

 

UPDATE:
01. July 2019
Clive Schlee’s “Retirement” vs. Resignation

and so on…


 

»It’s amazing to me how many business leaders separate their employees from their customers/patrons.
Your employees are your core target audience to put word-of-mouth out about your organization.«
 – by @minmilyjung

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2019 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

This is why Pret wants you to DM them

I have tweeted this before several times for people to not get lured into DM, mainly to keep the conversation public, but also because Pret want customers’ data.

Pret sends little freebies in return for addresses.

Don’t believe me if you don’t want to.

If you want to unsubscribe from a website/newsletter but can’t find the feature, press F3 and enter into search “unsubscribe”.

Here is an eagle eye after my own heart:

2019-12-19 Pret hides unsubscribe1

Link

You’ll need to read the WHOLE text to spot it:

2019-12-19 Pret hides unsubscribe2

I write about the reality behind Pret’s “happy” facade and collect staff reviews. This slideshow is just a small selection of a long list. There is a reason why Pret and its leadership have such poor scores on Glassdoor & Co. If a multi-billion pound/dollar company under private equity looks too good to be true, just take a closer look.

Clive Schlee, since September 2019 former CEO even briefly mentioned the data base their building when asked in an interview on “Teddy Talks” (no, not TED Talks!). Mario Bauer noticed that for the first time people are asked to enter their email addresses. I took that interview apart on another blog post: Clive Schlee: A Case Study on the Fun Factory. And it’s notable to say that Clive Schlee at the end of the interview mentions that he’s getting his priorities changed from profit driven to more important things in what we leave behind. Well, now he’s thinking about his own legacy after having driven the company full steam ahead, ignoring warnings on allergen, two customers died and he STILL didn’t act UNTIL the deaths became public. NOW he’s thinking about his legacy.

Schlee still remains in the background pulling the strings as a non-executive Director. He “retired” with this legacy:

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

 

… handing over to the new CEO, his prodigee Pano Christou. Part of the reason for their scores is in the below slideshow.

2019-11-19 Pano 40 vs 31

 

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints and extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, even witnessed by a customer:
—>>> Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:


©2019 expret.org

Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

Day 17: The Pret A Manger Brainwash

 

Day 17 of >>> Away in Pret A Manger Ad-VENT Calendar

 

Pret’s Values and Behaviours are not a set of rules staff have to follow, but a little booklet of brainwash the staff are subjected to. Pret has changed the wording in 2015. Where it now says:
“Needs Work” — “Good” — “Great”

Pret loosened up from the previous wording:
“Don’t want to see” — “Want to see” — “Pret Perfect”

I was reminded to post these Pret “values and behaviours” from an article by Timothy Noah on the emotional labour, the enforced happiness in Pret. Noah contacted Pret, but did not get any response and mentioned Pret’s values and behaviours that Pret had posted on their website, but after Noah’s article deleted from the site.

I was given this little booklet by David Carter, then Head of HR, when I contacted Clive Schlee, then CEO of Pret after my almost year long ordeal with management. I share my full story on this at the bottom audio player interview. David Carter, whose HR department ignored my plea for help and even were involved in my turmoil, was tasked to meet with me a few times as grievances were raised. In hindsight I understand that Carter met with me to brainwash me away from going to court. He later made 3 settlement offers for me to resign and be silent about what I went through. The fourth offer came via the court process when I raised a Tribunal claim, but withdrew as my dad died at the time and I had no lawyer.

I was extremely traumatized at the time with the loss of my brother and the bullying from Pret management under the watchful eye of HR. So, Carter’s aim was to gaslight me, and he succeeded of course, because I was so out of my mind and in trauma, I could not see left from right. But one thing he said puzzled me at first. After our first meeting he asked me at the end to tell him on a scale of 1 – 10 how meeting with him is for me. Later I realized he seemed to needed his ego strokes, as I wasn’t impressed to be meeting a “big cheese” from head office. My concern was my immediate line managers, Mr. Carter in case you’re reading this! My concern was not to stroke his ego or whatever else he wanted scratching!

He “promised” me to bring this little booklet for our next catch-up meeting. And at the second meeting he reminded me of his promise to bring this little booklet to show me something. Again, by then I knew what bullshit this is he’s doing. A “promise” woohoooo, to show me something, oooohhhh, aaaaahhh! What a big deal.

I did realize fast as well after he showed me a sentence in the booklet that they updated because of my situation. And I was supposed to go wooooohhhhoooo, aaaahhhh… that after he showed this to me. Pret tried to bullshit me that they are putting “policy” in place for bereaved staff. In reality this booklet is just a set of suggestions and brainwash that puts the ball back into the court of the shop management.

Shop management were ALL, except for one, overwhelmed with my situation. Not only did managers not have the tools and guidance from Pret to deal with bereaved employees, upper management under the watchful eye of HR bullied me, using a host of other people, managers, colleagues, even supposed customer complaints in emails about my service.

I found a description on Twitter of what EXACTLY was happening to me at the time, I just didn’t realize while in grief and trauma. But this is word for word what I went through in Pret;

Bullying Summed Up Nutshell

 

My situation went all the way to the top and infiltrated Head Office. Pret tried everything to get rid of me, as bereaved employees are an inconvenience for Pret, even long-term staff. I highlight later which sentence David Carter showed me, that was updated because of my situation. Yet, in reality this change was just another sentence of suggestion, and one that was supposed to show how caring Pret is. But again, no change in company policy on how to manage bereavement in the workplace.

I sent Pret management and HR several times a link to the ACAS guide of Bereavement at Work. Everytime they ignored the guide. In fact one HR People Business Partner even admitted that Pret could improve in supporting bereaved employees. I have his email because I applied for my file after the bullying.

The HR note taker wrote to a People Business Partner about my complaints when I was bullied by managers. 1. Pret never wanted to admit that I was bullied, and they worked all together to prevent this from being admitted. 2. the People Business Partner admitted that Pret can improve on this etc. A few months later this PBP was the note taker of yet another grievance appeal hearing that I raised against his colleague, another PBP who was in the background supporting the bully managers against me. I showed him this email of what he wrote, and he then said, “Well, in hindsight he might have been wrong.”

The email of the note taker in yellow and the response of the PBP in red:

 

No support from Pret

 

Yet, nothing changed. Again, for new readers, my story on how Pret not only NOT improved, but continued to bully me, including now former CEO Clive Schlee patronizing me, is in the interview at the bottom audio player.

A review I stumbled across from a Pret worker in New York who got penalized for going to a funeral:

Personal Issues1

Link

And a recent review of no support when having personal issues:

Personal Issues2

Link

Here are the Pret Values and Brainwash … uhm Behaviours in their typical psychology and wordplay:

img291

The brainwash in wordplay here is simple: Pret claims to give shops a “hand”, while in reality these suggestions are just something people can follow if they want to kiss butt to be promoted. Pret values, in fact are spread all over my blog, on Glassdoor and Indeed etc. (Slideshow at the bottom).

 

img292

 

The above is more for regular Team Members and all staff. The “Strives for perfection” part was always a stomach turner! But it is a very typical Pret thing. Pret expects staff to be perfect while themselves having a laugh.

 

Las Vegas

Link

And only a few recent Manager and Head Office reviews that are not only heart-breaking, but show Pret Senior Managers’ true faces:

2019-10-31 GM - Slavery - RVW30135565

Link

2019-11-10 GM Horrible

Link

Head Office Reviews

HQ Bullies

Link

It Analyst HQ Head Office Review

Link

01 Go back to UK

Review by a Corporate, NY

 

Those reviews are only a hint of the many on the sites and the ones I collected. Staff spill the beans in anonymity on how reality is behind the “happy” facade. There’s a reason why Pret and its “leadership” have such poor scores on Glassdoor & Co.

 

Clive Schlee’s legacy:

2019-06-30 44 staff 50 Clive

 

New CEO Pano Christou:

2019-11-19 Pano 40 vs 31

 

 

img293

This part is now moving into leadership roles.

 

img296

 

This section is now for Leaders and Managers. And this is the part that David Carter “promised” to show me. On the “Great” column, the 6th point. The part he showed me: “Tackles people issues early and sensitively, showing great compassion.”

 

Mittelfinger

This is an x-ray of my left middle-finger after an injury. This is for the blank page.

The tackling early and sensitively, showing great compassion Pret shows AGAIN in the end when they tasked a Development Manager, who supposedly had a brother as well who died alone in his apartment and wasn’t discovered for days. I share this in my interview at the bottom audio player and wrote about it here:

Lila Warren, David Carter, Clive Schlee

and

Lila Tighilt Warren and “her brother” Zain

 

Some reviews on the brainwash in Pret:

 

2013-07-30 Brainwashed Sandwich Making - RVW2875416

Link

2015 People Cry

Link

2015-12-04 TM - Brain Wash Brainwash - RVW8825267 marked

Link

Brainwash

Link

 

Brainwashed scared

Link

etc. etc. etc. … more on this Slideshow:

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in Pret Staff Complaints and extensive accounts of Pret’s systemic bullying behind the facade, even witnessed by a customer: Caught in the Act at Pret.

 


 

I worked at Pret A Manger and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the now “retired” former CEO Clive Schlee. I declined 4 settlement offers if I am silent about my ordeal. But I rather starve and speak out to help others. For an overview of important blog entries of my experience with Pret, please visit “My Ordeal with Pret A Manger”. The little arrow to the right next to each heading will lead directly to the post.
I tell my story for the first time verbally in below audio player interview on a podcast by
The Adam Paradox, and wrote two articles in the Scottish Left Review: 1. “Late Night Girl’s” Story with Pret and 2. Pushing Back Against Pret.
Thank you for reading/listening.


Interview:

©2019 expret.org


Unless otherwise stated or linked to, this website and all writings within this site are the property of expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org and are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. Reproduction and distribution of my writings without written permission is prohibited.
©2017 – Present: expret.org, poetrasblok.com, LateNightGirl.org unless otherwise stated. All Rights reserved. Disclaimer.

 

 

Day 13: A Day in the Life of a Pret Worker

 

Day 13 of >>> Away in Pret A Manger Ad-VENT Calendar

 

The Truth behind the Pret A Manger smile, and the emotional, mental, physical and financial cost to staff.

 

Timothy Noah Quote Emotional Labor

LINK to Emotional Labour article

Upfront, Pret staff will NEVER spill the beans on why they are so cheery! They remain professional because they fall for the Pret trap like everyone. They only out themselves anonymous on review websites, YouTube etc., further below. Just very few speak out publicly. Even during the darkest period in grief and being bullied, I never even hinted to a customer what was going on! I was complemented on my professional service, smile, giving free coffees, and no-one knew that after my shift I went to the bridge at times.

 

~~~ Here is the Short Version ~~~

In a nutshell why ALL (most) staff members EVERYWHERE in Pret are ALWAYS so smiley, cheery, friendly and helpful. No matter how busy and stressful it is.

The magic words: Mystery Shoppers

Mystery Shoppers (MS) are tasked to probe into a list of things every week in every shop, like if there is an adequate amount of selection during certain times, or if the shop incl. toilets are clean and so on. The most important thing the MS have to probe is customer service. I call them the “Misery” Shopper because many times they were so micromanaging pointing out the smallest stain on a table or a smudge on the window!

For Team Members there are two “motivating” factors for the smiley customer service:

  1. Cash incentives. Overall bonus for the whole shop team which is £1 per hour worked. So if a Team Member (TM) worked 40 hours that week, they will get an additional £40 on top of their contracted wage for that week, provided the MS report was all in the green area and then gave the bonus to the whole team. Managers’ bonuses are given quarterly. But a TM can individually also earn extra cash on top of the bonus (or even if the bonus for the whole team was lost).
    This is called an “Outstanding Card” (OC) which is £100 extra if the MS is super happy with a particular TM or even General Manager (GM), Assistant Manager (AM) etc. Meaning, if the TM “kissed butt” especially hard, gave a freebie etc. they can earn that extra cash on top of their wages and team bonus. If the report is 100% perfect scores and the MS awards an OC to a staff member, that TM earns double = £200. So, that one staff member gets their weekly wages, the weekly bonus PLUS the extra £100 or £200 cash. £100 OC (Outstanding Card) or £200 SOC (Super Outstanding Card).
    Side note: An Outstanding Card is not literally a card, it’s just a name for the extra cash award. There are no cards given, “just” the money. So, when a TM is EXTRA SPECIAL nice, it is often (not always!) that they assumed they’re serving the Mystery Shopper!
  2. Fear Management. If any TM or several of the Team messes up in any way resulting in bonus being lost for the whole team incl. GM (bonus not awarded by the MS), the angry manager will have a word with them. Depending what the bonus was lost on, this often is done in subtle or direct fear management where staff are made to fear for their job or position.

 

2018-01-23 Outstanding Card

Link The reason why she got the Outstanding Card and with it the extra £100, or £200 if the shop had perfect scores, is the white writing on the red background. The Mystery Shopper rewarded this TM for this reason, quote:
“I noticed that the avocado in the remaining veggie box salads were brown and I asked if there were any fresher ones. The team member said she would ask the kitchen to make me a fresh one. She telephoned them and said if it was okay she would take the veggie box to the kitchen and they would replace the avocado for me.”

Other times a TM gives a free coffee to the Mystery Shopper but does NOT get an Outstanding Card. It is completely up to the MS what blows them away and what not.

NOTE: The bonus is also used by abusive management to manipulate staff members. For example: company policy is that when a staff member (except Managers & Assistant Managers who are on the monthly pay-role, not on hourly pay) calls sick, even just for one day, they will not receive their bonus for that week. Also, when staff members come to work late, they get their bonus cut. BUT while the bonus cut for sickness is company policy and already bad enough, the lateness issue is supposed to be in the discretion of the Manger. So, if I come to work always on time, even earlier, and one time I am late 5 minutes due to traffic issues etc., the Manager could (and should) be merciful as they would know me to always be on time.

But I have worked with Managers who didn’t like me or another Team Member and cut our bonus mercilessly! We had to then fight and reason with management why they are so harsh, while letting their favourite staff members off the hook regularly.

Also, bonus is cut for stupid reasons. I was threatened by a Manager early when I just became a Team Leader and wasn’t even trained well. In those days Pret had the burgundy plastic opening/closing sign that you needed to slide open for the opening time, and slide close to the closing time. In my early days I forgot to slide it to “open” about 2 – 3 times a week. But instead of training me how to double check everything before opening time, I was threatened that if I forget to slide it to open, that my bonus for that week would be cut. It was absolutely kindergarten and ridiculous. A colleague of mine got his bonus cut because he came to work after a few days off with a beard. Pret demands staff to speak with management first when they plan to grow a beard! Yes, I’m not kidding! So, the staff member flipped out, had a big verbal fight with the Manager and left Pret because that was just the last drop on the barrel for him.

Abusive, insecure and immature Managers use the bonus as fear management.

Pret Staff Tweets:

2017 Mystery Shopper sick pay

The £45 Mystery Shopper bonus she’s talking about is that she would have worked 45 hours that week. Each hour is £1 bonus, as Pret cuts the weekly bonus even when staff are sick for 1 day that week. And the rest £55 she means is the hours she lost for that 1 day. And Pret only responds to her Tweet because it’s public. In reality Pret does nothing and doesn’t care if staff are sick.

A Tweet to the then CEO before his “retirement” in September 2019, by a frustrated Team Member:

2019-06-05 TM bonus cut sick mystery shopper

Link

 

~~~ And here is the Long Version ~~~

I cover mainly the “smiley” culture of Pret in: “How Companies force Emotional Labour on Low-Wage Workers“, but I want to take the reader through a typical day in Pret A Manger, and why this MS scheme is dangerous for mental health, not to mention patronizing and humiliating.

PAMSU Dismantle MS

Link

 

End MS

Link

 

First of all I want to start off by saying that I don’t think a Mystery Shopper scheme is a bad idea, I think it can be helpful to improve customer service where needed. The problem with Pret is, they take this to intense levels which I find abusive. Or in the words of a case study, quote:

»The case is about the enforced happiness of the employees of Pret A Manger. Here, the employer demands those persons who have specific attributes and capability to appeal to the senses of the customers to attract them. … It presents an extreme case of emotional labour that the employees of Pret A Manger are made to practice while selling cheddar and tomato sandwich. Emotional labour is conceptualised as a practice that sabotages the rights of the employees

— From Arsalan, Case Study

The extreme “perfection” staff have to reach is done to create a picture to the public, that staff are so happy to work in Pret. In reality they are tasked to “perform” emotional labour (or “labor” for American readers!). It opens the door to abusive leadership, bullying environment forcing staff into “unnatural” behaviour they would normally not do, unless they “feel” it. And with many other abusive situations, like even domestic violence, harassment etc., any aggressive behaviour that is systemic, people get conditioned to it, accept it as norm, but suffer internally and in silence also because it is systemic and seems acceptable. Everyone is subjected to this, so they feel they go out of line if they complain. At least that’s how I often felt, because everyone “is doing it”, it must be okay or normal to keep smiling even while bereaved. I share in my interview at the bottom of this page the horrific time I went through while already traumatized after I lost my brother.

Even journalists “get used” to abuse and accept it as the norm:

Journalists getting used to harrassment

Link

I want to share a rough timeline of activities on a day-to-day running of a Pret shop, as well as a little bit of the kitchen to paint a true picture of the immense stress staff are under on a daily basis. I was a Team Leader of the shop or also called Floor Leader (FL) and know working in the shop inside out. I can’t speak much about running a kitchen, but will briefly touch on the kitchen. The shop and the kitchen are like two separate businesses that need two separate leaders. Both have their own separate challenges as well as positives.

2019-11-29 View into Pret kitchen photo2

Link

For example in the shop staff HAVE TO smile and perform a cheery presence, while in the kitchen they can just be themselves. In the kitchen they have no windows, have to work super fast assembling products without time to think until their break (or until they literally break!). In the shop there are windows to get daylight and space, while still having to clean, stock up etc. In the kitchen the staff can choose their own music BUT the music has to be LOUD and FAST, so they work fast! Pret sells this as “fun” while working, but in reality it is a beating drum to set the pace. But at least they can choose their songs. In the shops staff cannot choose and have to listen to the same old, same old, same old tunes every single day for months and months, until Pret changes the playlist! And many other differences between the two work areas. (Side note: the music in shops is also loud so that customers don’t linger around too long occupying seats 😉 The money has to flow…) And many other things that vary between the kitchen and the shop.

I often “mediated” between the two teams when they were at “war” pointing fingers, where the kitchen felt the shop team is lazy or the shop felt the kitchen team have it easier. I always pointed out to both teams that each team has their challenges as well as good parts, but that EVERYONE works hard and has a lot of stress, just differently.

The most poignant Pret staff review I came across. It’s from a worker who mainly worked in the kitchen, but also had to jump in helping at the tills doing customer service. This jumping back and forth is VERY common in Pret, and very frustrating for staff:

Annihilate Humanity 45

Link

Hierarchies

Shop hierarchy:
General Manager (GM) and Assistant Manager Floor (AMF) are in plain business attire
Floor Leader (FL) – Green belt and name badge

Baristas/Coffee Makers – Black belt, shirt and name badge
Hot Food Chef (HFC) – Red belt, and name badge
Team Members (TM) – Burgundy belt and white name badge. Sometimes wearing red apron to help the Hot Chef out.

The colour of the badge is the main indicator of position, not the apron or even shirt.

And whatever other position Pret comes up with, as they sometimes add job roles. But these are the main roles distinguished in their colours (belt, name badge) so outside teams can quickly identify who’s who.  The most important who does most of the hard work is the Team Leader. They really are the ones that run the shop, if they are good and don’t imitate most GMs who like to sit in the office, don’t help and just shout like slave masters.

Kitchen hierarchy:
Again the same General Manager (GM) but a different Assistant Manager Kitchen (AMK), plain business attire
Kitchen Leader (KL) – Green belt and name badge
Team Member Trainer (TMT) Blue belt and name badge
Team Members (TMs) – Burgundy belt and white name badge

Kitchen TMs, the sandwich makers who are called “chefs” by Pret to make them feel better and portray to the public as if there was some real cooking going on in the kitchen! Lots of patronizing and fooling slogans like “Lovingly made in this kitchen today” bla bla…

In reality all the food comes already cooked, except the frozen bread, croissants etc. But all ingredients are ready cooked and delivered daily from factories. Hence also “Ready to Eat”. The soups come in large plastic bags and are heated in water baths. All other ingredients are like we have at home after getting the shopping from the supermarket. There’s no cooking involved, just heating up and assembling a sandwich. Even the “poached” eggs that do come raw, are just heated in sealed plastic pouches in a water bath. There are no pots and pans and stoves in Pret kitchens!

One recent staff review:

2019-06-11 Nightmare Stop Being Evil

Link Under Show more: “The food isn’t fresh, it’s shipped already cooked in plastic bags and reheated. A joke.”

 

As the shop and the kitchen are like two separate businesses in each shop, the AMF and/or FL run the shops and do the ordering for the shop, look after the Team, customers etc. The AMK and/or KL do the ingredient ordering for the kitchen, look after the Team etc.

As all Prets I’ve worked in are under-staffed to maximize profit and managers’ bonuses (incl. area managers and upwards) many TMs are pushed to multi-task. If a shop is lucky, they have 3 TMs on the tills in the mornings if there are 6-7 tills. They have 1 Barista with the GM doing coffee as well, as this is easier than customer service at the tills! GMs don’t like to work on the tills! As there aren’t enough staff, they ring the bell for one or two of the kitchen staff to then come out and help serve the queues during the morning rush. This puts an immense strain on the kitchen staff, who then get behind on their production, where they are expected to do a certain amount of products per hour. If they fail to finish in time, including cleaning etc., again they will be motivated through fear management and are bullied (subtly or openly) to work overtime, unpaid.

 

LackStaff

Link Barista 2019

 

Unpaid

Link 2018

 

Unpaid2017

Link 2017 NY

 

Unpaid2

Link 2015

 

Unpaid2014b

Link 2014

 

Unpaid2011

Link 2011 NY

“It is clear they have little to know training and have absolutely no training or experience in employee relations or even customer relations for that matter. Every manager I have worked with – I have worked with 6 – will immediately try to belittle you. Not sure exactly why this is such a common practice among managers but it is an intrinsic behavior within the company itself. …Very, very sad reality of Pret. -Company culture….”

 

Unpaid2014

Link 2014 “Manager at my shop treated everyone really poorly. Expect you to stay longer to complete your job for free when not enough time is given. Constantly missing hours from extra shifts taken. Have to ask every week to see if they have repaid those hours and in some cases takes months to chase back.”

NOTE: The “for some reason” is more systemic than this and many other TMs realize. I had to chase my money CONSTANTLY.

 

2017-05-26 AM NYC Pure Misery

 

25 Staff complain in Twitter not paid HR

Link

 

03-wages2-1-e1554218697911.jpg

Link

 

Pret had to settle two class action lawsuits in NY within 4 years on wage issues. In the UK people never do a Class Action, but it would be high time for Pret staff to go to court on wage issues!

 

Wgae Lawsuit

Link

 

Customer observations:

2018-10-20 Staff cry

Link

 

2019-03-22 Customer Noticing busyness Pret1

Link

 

2019-03-22 customer kings cross emma observation stress

Link

 

MS Cough

MS: “Team members should smile at customers and may not work when ill, as team member was coughing whilst serving me and was therefore not feeling cheerful enough to smile that day.”

I coughed while serving the Mystery Shopper as I had a cold. But I chose not to stay home as we were not paid the first 2 days even when we have a sick note.

A typical day in Pret (underneath the slideshow)

JavaScript required to view slideshow. May not work on mobile devices without Wifi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Slideshow can be paused

The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in —> Pret Staff Complaints

 

A typical day in Pret

Main “Crunch” Times based on an average shop:
5AM
6AM
Between 8-10AM
Between 12 Noon-2PM
Afternoons until closing time.

I share these times from all the shops I worked at, with an average of 6 – 8 tills and a team of about 25 – 35 staff.

 <