If you have been to a Starbucks store, you would understand, when I describe about the kind of energy and positive spirits the baristas carry.
It is like stepping into different zone where, as a customer you sometimes feel like a spectator or even a cheerleader wanting thecompany to do well. No matter which Starbucks you happen to be in the world, it gives you a sense of familiarity, a piece of home.
Perhaps its just me, perhaps the enthusiasm will rub off, when you learn more about their culture because they represent the good guys, and we all want the good guys to win!
Excerpt from an interview with Howard Schultz, CEO Starbucks:
“The only reason we are in business is because of the quality of people we are able to attract into our team, coupled with the quality of coffee we can and… If we do not do the two things well, we are finished. We are not in the coffee business serving people, we are in the people business serving coffee. If we believe that, we have to imprint a level of understanding and behavior about how we do things. It begins with attracting people with like-minded values, people who want to serve the customers, who want to be part of the environment.”
Starbucks put their money where the mouth is by being one of the very few companies that provide healthcare benefits and stock options even to their part timers. In 2009, the company spent $300 million on insurance, more than they spend on coffee beans in a year. Schultz indicated that he wanted to build a company where people would not be left behind, one that his father never had a chance to work for.
In an autobiography written by Michael Gill, a barista at Starbucks, found more meaning, happiness and life purpose in Starbucks pouring coffee than in his well-paid, highly esteemed job as a creative director for JW Thomson.
At Starbucks, staff are known as partners, and they take the word ‘respect’ very seriously, even to the extent of ensuring positive and polite phrases are carried out in the conversation between partners. There is a rule that state use the phrase “can you do me a favor” when they need help, instead of demanding for a job to be done! Gill attributed his second chance in life to Starbucks’ unwavering commitment to treating people as people.
“The Starbucks mission statement is more than words on a piece of paper – it’s the philosophy that guides how we do business every day.” Howard Schultz
The Starbucks Mission Statement
To inspire and nurture the human spirit— one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.
We’re called partners, because it’s not just a job, it’s our passion. Together, we embrace diversity to create a place where each of us can be ourselves. We
always treat each other with respect and dignity. And we hold each other to that standard.
When we are fully engaged, we connect with, laugh with, and uplift the lives of our customers— even if just for a few moments. Sure, it starts with the promise of a perfectly made beverage, but our work goes far beyond that. It’s really about human connection.