Fun place to work, advancement is limited, seasonal, district mgr ruined my experience
Setup is intense, receive a large truck in a couple hours, setup an entire store in a week to two weeks max, hire 20 or so people from a small pool of applicants in a short time table. It's hard to find good people who only want to work 3 months a year at just above min wage.
Lots of pressure on the Store Manager to follow strict corporate guidelines that get worse each year. People who sit in a cubical or office all day make rules for stores that make no practical sense. It's become less personable, less fun and it's more about corporate guidelines than anything else.
Store managers start working to some degree at home late July/early Aug setting up interviews, getting things lined up for the store all of this is non-paid until you actual go in and do interviews. They don't consider these things when figuring time you worked. You won't see a paycheck til nearly the end of Aug while District mgrs start being paid sooner. District mgrs and operators get to go to New Jersey for corporate retreats but the Store Mangagers do not so they know nothing about what is new, what's expected that season etc.
Most stores are/were consignment stores operated by individuals. Now corporate is trying to take over them all and forcing them operators to act as employees instead of owners. Which it rolls down hill from there.
When you get a bad district manager, good luck to you because you're thrown to the wolves. There's no communication from corporate or operator to the store man
ProsFun, it's a halloween store! Laid back once the corporate stuff is overwith.
ConsCorporate is the downfall and district managers who set you up to fail
Spirit Halloween is a fast-Paced, No-holds Barred work environment that either molds you into a wonderful retail worker, or chews you up and spits you out.
Spirit is a Seasonal employment opportunity that Lasts approximately 3 months, depending on the area/location.
When you apply, you are essentially applying for 2 jobs. Underpaid Warehouse worker, and not enough hours retail employee.
If you start at the beginning of the season, you will be expected to work 35+ hours a week doing hard manual labor within a very tight timeframe, at standard retail pay (which is, 3-4 dollars below what one could make at any warehouse nearby)
Once the store is set up, your hours get slashed to 10-15 hours a week (except for management: Assistants get about 20 hrs, Store Manager is Full-time) During this time you work regular retail stuff until the last 2 weeks before and culminating in Halloween, in which every day is like black friday, slowly getting worse and worse.
After halloween, you switch back into Warehouse worker, where everything gets packed up and stored away. This takes significantly less effort than setup, but is still hard work.
Thats the gist of spirit, but some other tidbits that I can solve from other reviews I've read:
-Corporate vs Franchise:
Like numerous retail stores, Spirit has Corporate-owned stores and Family owned stores, however the family-owned stores are quickly becoming less and less common. Most complaints I've ever heard About Spirit
ProsGood second job, starting job, seasonal
ConsThey expect a lot out of you, must be willing to undertake a challenge
The work environment at Spirit Halloween is incredibly hostile. There is very little communication between any of the departments, which leads to a multitude of errors throughout company materials and guides, as well as conflicting information. An email could reference a document with one instruction, while the email itself instructs to do something else entirely. You'll get a different answer from every person you ask, and your solution will likely be considered wrong no matter what you choose.
Employees are expected to dedicate their entire life to the job- whether salaried or hourly. Assistant managers are paid two dollars above minimum wage while being expected to completely run the store in the manager's absence and have open availability. Store managers are expected to work 60+ hours the last two weeks before Halloween and are shamed when they take days off. There is absolutely no training given to any employee under a zone manager, and even ZMs are given bad information.
Stores are rarely given proper materials to work with and must make do with whatever is around. Hand carts aren't available, so shopping carts are "borrowed" from neighboring stores. While it's the DSM's responsibility to provide stores with basic necessities (toilet paper, tape, scissors, pens, etc), there isn't any sort of action to take if they simply aren't doing their job. There isn't any stability with scheduling for associates. During setup, most associates work 40 hours a week, before drop
ProsGreat connections, no dress code
ConsToxic environment, no training, low pay, unpredictable scheduling
I quit this job after only 2 weeks. I’ve worked here before and it WAS my favorite job. They had a change in management & I guess they just gave up on morals or were desperate to fill the district manager positions. I was pressured to quit repeatedly, bullied as well as fat-shamed by the DM. I have a few health problems that made some portions of my job more challenging & he wrote that off and treated me like I was flat out being lazy/ embarrassing. Would tell me I was being defensive when I tried to explain the issues. I tried to talk to him multiple times & just be straight forward with him to clear the air and hopefully relieve his attitude/tension with me. He twisted it around every time. He even gossiped about me to my co-workers not knowing they all really respected & liked me & would tell me what he was saying.
As far as day to day operations goes....Did not know if I was working the next day until the night before sometimes as late as 11pm. Tasks were word vomited & never clear & when we would ask questions we were told to “step it up” or “pay more attention.” Extreme micromanaging even when doing exactly as asked, felt a lot like harassment. No training until OPENING day. No one not even the store manager was taught how to work registers & when we finally got customers we just had to try to figure it out in the handbooks. As an assistant manager I didn’t receive store keys or security codes until 2 weeks in, the day I was set to be opening the store. Once again was
ProsCo-workers & Store Manager were very nice
ConsToxic Upper Management (DM), Bullying, Gossiping, Unorganized, No Break Room, No Air Conditioning, Inconsistent scheduling, Lack of Care for Employees Well Being
Working with Spirit Halloween was one of the best and worst things I ever did. It was fun because of the people I worked with. Physically it's draining because you and your team have to unload a huge truck with thousands of fixtures then another one with boxes on it. All of my staff and fellow managers laughed and called it a workout because that is exactly what it was.
I wouldn't recommend it to people who like to be lazy and can't lift more then 100 pounds. I found myself more then once lifting really heavy peg boards that were about 120 pounds because the girls couldn't lift it, and I'm a girl myself.
At the beginning and the end it's chaos. You have to be good with merchandising and following instructions. Can't be late otherwise it drags the team down.
Having retail and customer service experience is a must. You get a lot of days where customer's can be really nasty and you have to know how to deal with it and smile.
Management was the best. They were all awesome, even people form corporate. There was more then one time I messed up and someone had to come down to see what was going on. It always turned into a learning experience because upper management was ALWAYS willing to show you what you did and how you could avoid making the mistake in the future. I didn't get chastised or yelled at except maybe once.
Best part of working there was seeing the kids come through and try on the costumes and pop back out to their parent's while they giggled. The atmosphere was
ProsExperience, Good Management, Fun, Friendly, Good Atmosphere, A good work out, the 30% employee discount
ConsDirty, No cleaning supplies, Too pushy when it came to donations, Not the best pay for the amount of effort I put in, Angry truck drivers
Had a great time working here,
Management was good, and for the most part instructions were clear.
Tasks varied from day to day, and could range anywhere from collapsing shipping boxes to restocking to supervising the changing rooms to wandering the store in costume offering assistance to costumers.
Speaking of costumes, it is possible that you may hear that you're scheduled for costume duty, notice a creepy doll costume, and decide to wear heels to work on that day to complete the look.
Don't do it- the pain is not worth it. Stick to practical shoes.
Also, it would be a good idea to keep a roll of Scotch tape in your apron pocket. Trust me, you will need it, and the roll at the front desk will end long before the store does.
Repairing packaging, taping reservation notes on costume bags, and taping up the paper pumpkins that represent donations to Spirit of Children are just some of the many tasks you will most likely need tape for.
Other tasks on a typical day include helping customers find things, returning unwanted costumes from the changing rooms to their appropriate sections, and politely asking more rowdy customers to stop having sword fights with the props. Especially the realistic chainsaws.
It's honestly pretty hard to get bored with all the strange and wonderful things to look at. Wandering the store during a break could be plenty entertaining- especially if you spot a costumer getting jumpscared by one of the animatronics.
Not to mention resto
Good first job if you have good management and dont start till mid season
Overall it's an easy job anyone can get. The interview was just asking about your goals and past experiences. I applied before the store opened and was hired on the spot. The store building part is lots of hard manual labor for minimum wage. You will be trained in how to set up displays, merchandise, and sort through shipments. You will unload the boxes that can be very heavy out of the back of the truck yourself so be prepared for heavy lifting. A lot of time is spent on ladders also. Also, the company trusts no one and you will have to perform bag and pocket checks on each other every time you come in and leave the store. Once the store opens for the season you be trained on their terrible cashier system that hardly ever works and you have to re-log into every transaction. You have to count all the money in your register before and after every shift. The company doesn't like to give people many hours so expect 4-12 hours a week until mid-october. Your experience will completely depend on management once the store is open. At first we had laid back management and it was a fun job. Then corporate came in and changed everything. We had to completely redesign the store but since hours were low and management was now not allowed to check people out all the pressure was on the sales associates. It can be a very stressful job when you have to open and unload merchandise, watch the whole store alone and run the dressing rooms. Just be prepared to multitask a lot because theres not
Pros30% discount, fun helping customers pick out costumes
Consshot breaks if you get any, poor management and scheduling, no support, no career advancement, no trust, limited hours, manual labor
Picked it up because I was out of work and thought it might be a fun way to bring in a little extra while I was looking for a full time job. was given an apron and maybe 5 minutes of training (I didn't expect a lot because it's a temporary job but seriously). Store was chronically and severely short staffed for the two weeks I was there. My second day I got called in two hours early, wasn't really a big deal until I went to go home and either I'd been told the wrong schedule or it got changed because suddenly I was supposed to close, which would have put me working a ten hour day as a part time worker on my second day. I would've quit then if management hadn't come back and sent me home. Probably should have.
Got scheduled two days the next week and they tried to call me for two more. I got hired full time elsewhere and let them know that week would be my last. All in all I was there for two weeks, no training, and even though there was about a week delay between when I was hired and when I started they never got me set up to actually be able to clock in so I had to write down all my hours on a sheet. There's a two week delay in the pay cycle, which means if you start at the beginning of October you don't get paid until the end of the month.
No direct deposit went into my bank account today (I started at the beginning of the month) and they had nothing for me at the shop. I did not get paid, probably because the store manager didn't bother putting in my hours man
Proshalloween is cool and the coworkers were also pretty cool
Consyou might not get your breaks, very busy with little or no support, total lack of training, and you might not even get paid
Responsible for the build-out through tear-down phases of the store. You will select, train, and ultimately terminate and evaluate your seasonal subordinate staff (including your Assistant Managers). Receive and confirm merchandise and supply trucks; prepare and deliver bank deposits (daily, preferably); engage in regular sales coaching with staff to exceed sales targets; monitor and instruct staff on loss prevention strategies; ensure pricing coordination duties and damages are completed daily; manage and supervise third-party contractors on occasion; potentially coordinate with local media outlets for store marketing purposes; be available for calls from your AMs and DSM, solicit donations for the Spirit of Children charity.
It can be a very fun job, especially if you're a fan of the Halloween season. It's not a "cake-walk" job and at times requires hard, responsible, albeit creative, work. The good thing is that you and your employees are very much encouraged to responsibly play dress-up as well as demonstrate products that garner laughs and smiles from the patrons whom you're encouraging to let loose for the holiday.
Take charge; manage your inventory and labor well, select a quality & enthusiastic staff team and train them to achieve success, and dedicate yourself to working an average of 50-hours each week and you will earn a reasonable salary replete with solid bonuses in addition to enjoying a rather playful diversion from the standard rigmarole of ordinary dail
ProsReturning staff receive a raise each season, fun times & memories made, bonus and promotion potential, some degree of creative control, reasonable wages for retail management
ConsGreater percentage of dishonest, scam-oriented, or thieving customers than in an average retail operation, corporate may play fast-n-loose with established policy directives
Spirit Halloween is a good place to work with good pay for the positions. The upper management that I worked with are good at their jobs and want everyone to succeed.
The Halloween industry is very unique and can be very stressful. You have to be able to manage your employees and the store under a lot of pressure and very short deadlines. The store must be put together and ready to open very quickly and the store must be kept clean and Brand Standards maintained even during the peak days. Then the store just be taken apart and cleaned up in a very short amount of time.
This will test your management skills. If you are good under stress and pressure and can work very hard then this will be a good fit for you. I have had several assistant manager who could not handle this.
Managers are expected to work hard and think clearly under enormous pressure and stress as well as train and manage your employees. It's the nature of the Halloween industry because of the popularity of the holiday and the short season to work in. You are expected to put in overtime every week and especially at the end of the season. Managers must deal with employees that quit before the end of the season and be able to staff their stores accordingly.
Managers are expected to be very hands-on and be working with customers and be visible. You will be making sure that your store is clean and in good order, that all displays are functioning at all times and are in accordance with Brand Standards.
The store is run by people there day to day, but we are forced to try and accommodate for decisions made by people in corporate, who rarely come into the store. They clearly have little to no idea what goes on in the stores and this shows in their decision making. For example: in 2019, there was an unusually large number of returns made, so corporate decided to force employees to contact the DSM for any returns over $25. Most product in the store happens to be over that limit, and the DSM has to approve BEFORE we can actually return the money, which means we might be waiting for a while, with the customer right there, staring at us the whole time. As if that wasn't bad enough, the next day the manager has to do a 'review' on every single return. For the review, we have to have the reason why it was returned, meaning we have to ask sometimes in depth questions during the return, while these people just want their money, then we have to write it on the back of the receipt. Then, while the manager is writing the 'review', they have to go through all of yesterdays receipts to find the one that applies to that specific return and give the reason. And yes, the manager has to do this every single day, including "days off". They have to come in on days off and spend sometimes upwards of two hours, frustrated the entire time, doing reviews AT A REGISTER, with customers walking up to them and trying to check out, only to have to reject them, because the downright terrible systems that
Questions And Answers about Spirit Halloween Super Store
What is the best part of working at Spirit Halloween?
Asked Oct 16, 2019
the employee discount and customers
Answered Jul 1, 2022
Keeping Customers Happy Especially Their Smiles
Answered Jul 1, 2022
What questions did they ask during your interview at Spirit Halloween?
Asked Aug 9, 2016
Why should they hire me
Answered Oct 3, 2022
Availability, why do you want to work there, previous job experience
Answered Sep 27, 2022
If you were in charge, what would you do to make Spirit Halloween a better place to work?
Asked Jan 24, 2017
Only hire the amount of staff needed not have so many that some are only getting 4 hours a week. Better management that takes the job seriously.
Answered Nov 10, 2020
Answered Aug 17, 2020
What tips or advice would you give to someone interviewing at Spirit Halloween?
Asked Aug 25, 2016
Honestly they will either hire anyone or only hire people they personally like not professionally like.
Answered Nov 10, 2020
Be friendly, a bit energetic, dress decent but no need for a suit or anything. And just be honest