As a current (but hopefully not too much longer) employee of Teavana, I support other former employees and will back up 100% what they have to say about their negative experiences for the company. I don't want to make this seem like a Teavana-bashing thread, but the first poster's experience is fairly accurate to what it is really like - I even had the same trainers. The only difference really with my story is that the GM was a mall hopper (managed several other mall stores- most of which don't exist anymore) and hired all of his friends and former employees to Team Lead positions. I was promoted immediately to Team Lead by the trainers and since have suffered because I am not part of that mall clique that is my other coworkers (4 out of 7 employees previously knew each other from other mall jobs).
I find that those who defend Teavana (employees or managers) typically buy into whatever they are told without hesitation. I have read information about teas and such that directly contradict what Teavana tells you to say. I also find that they do not care about employee concerns. I was even written up for shrinking out a bag of tea as damaged (Silver Needle) that was torn open and on the floor of our back room for weeks. I was told that I lost the company $300 in profit by treating a stale and contaminated tea as damaged. A coworker also recently found a large beetle in one of the tea tins from which we scoop out samples and customer tea.
While I do enjoy some of the teas and products Teavana offers, I have made the decision that once I am officially gone from the company, that I will no longer purchase my teas from there and switch to Adagio instead. I will also discourage others from Teavana and I will be sending in a letter to their corporate office about my own experiences (which I haven't touched on in the slightest). Even out of my other "low end" retail jobs, I have never been so abused by a company or my coworkers as I have been with Teavana- and the kicker is that they DON'T care. The turn-over rate is high.
To me, the solution is fairly simple- the company does not need to deliberately lie about the products to make the sale.. especially from what I've seen on these boards- the demand is there. I do not believe in sacrificing my integrity for a little bit of job security- especially since the pay is meager and the hours are even less. If Teavana wants to turn things around then they need to actually make the effort with their employees and try to keep who they have instead of threatening them every day about their numbers. In my store, people who don't make $200 in a shift will get written up. If they don't make an A or A+ grade for their sales 2 weeks in a row, they get written up. They will never make the Forbes list of Top 100 Places to Work.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that although my experience with the company has been atrocious, I still have my love of tea. (and I wanna see them go down).. haha