UPDATE: May 2019
TWO Pret staff have died within a month, 1 is said to be a suicide. It’s not the first suicide in Pret >>> Link to article
Full review of above quote is featured in below Slideshow
Facebook comment from @preth8ers
Recent public complaints by current and former Pret staff (more in the slideshow and blog)
This Pret staff writes this on Facebook in Feb. 2019 in response to Pret’s new “Homeless House” FB post. He points out the marketing/PR behind this, while current staff are mistreated, issues I’ve been publicly writing about since May 2018. And I underline his posts. It is all PR, using former SHORT-TERM, and mainly young, homeless people to polish up Pret’s image.
Important side note, this is also why Clive Schlee, CEO said in his blog where they put former homeless people (patronizingly calling them “Rising Stars” to which I wrote a blog on the “Fallen Stars” that are featured in the slideshow below) into their own shop, from the manager to the kitchen staff, running a whole shop with solely former homeless people. Schlee gave himself away how terrible work-conditions are when he said, that Pret is “careful to integrate” the “Rising Stars” into “regular” shops, as they don’t want them to get “too exposed”. Too exposed for what??!
The answer is in the slideshow below with some examples here.
Just few of the countless reviews in the slideshow below give a “hint” on what he doesn’t want them to get “too exposed” to … and I also cover this in my “Open Letter to the Pret Foundation Trust“.
Further in the Facebook comment by a Pret worker regarding Pret’s Homeless House:
Recent reviews on Glassdoor
I can only underline these, in my worst times during bereavement and being bullied by my line managers under HR’s guidance, my Teams got me through the day!
If Team Leaders are good and care, they are the hardest workers who really run the shops while most managers sit in the office and avoid responsibility. Team Leaders are overworked, underpaid, not trained and always blamed.
NEW review on Glassdoor again 08. June 2019 from a Barista in Oxford
Below, under the slideshow some info on wage lawsuits against Pret in the U.S. I knew about the one, but didn’t realize there was a second lawsuit that Pret settled! Current Pret staff will NEVER publicly or to customers tell how it really is behind the PR[et] facade, only anonymous on Review sites, YouTube etc. and via mail. Fear management is huge in Pret.
Two other groups/sites are out there, but not active:
Twitter Pret A Manger Staff Union: @__PAMSU__ since 2012
Facebook: I Hate Pret A Manger since 2011
And myself since May 2018.
Plus, my interview at the bottom of this page and Wage Lawsuits in NY against Pret under the slideshow.
THIS selection of Pret staff complaints / reviews is WHY Clive Schlee is “careful to integrate” former homeless people into “regular shops” not wanting to leave them “too exposed” while regular staff are pushed like slaves under Schlee’s leadership, to repay the investors with maximum profit and him pocketing £30 Million in bonus after the JAB takeover!
In the meantime Clive Schlee polishes Pret’s facade by doing some “charity” and loudly proclaiming via the press about it. And the majority of the public falls for it.
THIS is what Clive Schlee, CEO of Pret A Manger doesn’t want the “Rising Stars” to get “too exposed” to, being “careful to integrate them into regular shops”, because it would hurt Pret’s polished, shiny image having a former homeless person catapulted back onto the streets after the stress workers suffer in regular shops!
Get the popcorn out, this slideshow will take a while, but is only a selection of a longer list …
Slideshow can be paused
The above slideshow is just a selection, the list goes on in —> Pret Staff Complaints
Also, an important issue on the forced happiness Pret staff have to display under “Emotional Labour”, something I have survived during traumatic bereavement —> How Companies Force Emotional Labour on Low-Wage Workers.
Overall recommendations from Team Members to Management. This percentage from June 2019 rises again periodically when there are 5+ consecutive (suspiciously looking) positive reviews appearing, often worded similarly and/or listing every position in a row like Hot Chef, Barista, Team Leader etc. I can only ask people to go undercover into Pret like reporter Amy Sharpe did, but go under for a minimum of 3 months, not just a week. Do morning shifts in both the kitchen and coffee rush in the shops and feel the Pret blow!
“Labor Lawsuit Monthly: Pret a Manger
What Happened: New York workers sued Pret A Manger (for the second time in four years!) over wage violations. This time, workers accused the company of skimping on pay by rounding hours down when employees reported time worked.
The Result: Pret A Manger settled the case for $875,000, paid out to the affected workers.”
Just the thought that CEO Clive Schlee pocketed £30 Million after the JAB purchase, 30 times more than what Pret has paid in the settlement to 4000 (four thousand!) workers combined. And God knows how much the newly appointed COO Pano Christou got, who likes to stay low-key and is a little too quiet for a COO! And whatever all the other leaders received. Sick and greedy world we live in! From own experience how we were squeezed for the little pay, which is a few pennies more than the competition alright, but the work is humongous, staff work double for this in hopes to get promoted fast! I wrote this on other blog entries, but having wasted my time, skill and labour in Pret, apart from my own trauma with this company, it is the biggest regret in my life.
Pret is NOT what they portray themselves to be, they are just very good in marketing themselves as this ethical company! Look closer!
This below review is a huge problem in Pret UK as well, where team members are pressured under the pretense they’re not working hard enough, then have to stay longer to finish tasks without pay. This is done on purpose, where staff get so much to do which is unrealistic high. And then under this pretense are forced to stay longer unpaid. And if they complain they are threatened with disciplinaries and their job security. I had to chase my and my colleagues pay all the time and had to console depressed team members. As a team leader I also had to speak to managers many times on behalf of team members which made me not the favourite of the GMs, but I didn’t care, I cared about my team who had kids to feed!
Pret staff should sue Pret as well in a class action on wage issues. But people in the UK tend not to sue which I can relate to.
This is why when an organization is “loud” about certain claims, when something sounds too good to be true, it’s always best to take a closer look. Not a good idea to make such lofty claims, they’ll come back to bite them in the butt!
Any current Pret staff and any employee in general, take it from me after I almost lost my life in Pret and a AMK ended her life in 2017. I share my story in the below audio player. Don’t struggle on your own, if you do nothing else but this: join a Union!
“…staff who are hugely overstretched.” Link
For the first time I share my story verbally in one setting in this interview
I worked at Pret A Manger for almost 10 years and survived systemic workplace bullying during bereavement that involved HR, the top leadership, HQ and even the CEO. 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 also tell my story for the first time verbally in this >>> podcast interview based in California. Thank you for reading/listening.
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