Be on the look out for new Barista Promise Starbucks cups.
Be on the look out for new Starbucks white paper cups! The new version of the iconic white Starbucks hot-beverage cup will include the Barista Promise on it. The cups say on them, “Love your beverage or let us know. We’ll always make it right.” I think it’s a nice addition to the cups! What a great way to affirm the Barista Promise – put it right on the cups! These new cups will slowly be phased into stores around you. As your local store runs out of the classic white cups, they’ll be replenished with the new Barista Promise white cups.
I think Starbucks has placed a refreshed emphasis on your drink being perfect. I like that it’s backed up with in-store signage and on the cups both!
If you haven’t yet, you’ll soon see these cups in stores everywhere.
@Purple1 – Thank you for weighing in. I think that most of the time, if the customer can articulate how they want their drink, it’ll be remade without any issue. Mostly, actually, I see customers who are fine with their beverages. But some things are so subjective. I had a conversation last night with a barista about how much is “extra caramel” for a Frappuccino because what this means to be a partner might be totally different than what this means to a customer.
Interestingly, the partner distinguished between “extra caramel” and “extra extra caramel”. The “extra extra caramel” meant to her to do walls of caramel sauce inside the cup.
If a store has lots of upset customers, on a consistent basis, someone should be looking at the store’s leadership. That’s a sign that something is amiss!
I like the extra accountability. I won’t feel as embarrassed saying something because it’s right on the cup!
I like the cups/promise and the accountability! I’m not THAT customer who freaks about my drink not being ‘just so’! Having said that, I do find it interesting that depending on the barista of the day my ‘usual’ will taste different! I’ve mentioned it to the baristas and they can’t explain it as they say the drinks each have their own ‘recipe’. Go figure…
Great post Mel!
I don’t know what you drink, but if it’s a handcrafted espresso-based, the lack of consistency may be due to the way the barista pumps the syrup (not pumping full pumps) :(, or the extraction time of the espresso shots pulled. Extraction time in Mastrenas should be between 18-23 … Here lies the difference between a “weak” or a “bitter” tasting espresso-based beverage!
I hope this encourages customers to give feedback! You pay enough for your beverage & it should be made just like you want it!
Good points Aymee! Thanks for the info!
Customers, absolutely speak up if your drink isn’t correct! It may be an issue with the calibration of the espresso machine. It may be that you’re not getting full pumps of syrup. There are many variables that go into making every beverage.
But please…PLEASE…don’t be rude about it. And if you want something iced, please say so. There is absolutely no reason to be rude to someone because they (or someone in the chain of getting your drink made) made an error.
We’re human, too. We make mistakes, but we’ll be happy to remake your drink.
@Kristen – I 110% agree – no need to be rude! Though I’ve watched honest misunderstandings happen – you can see it by the tone of voice and expression on people’s faces. It’s very easy for the kind of disappointment that is, “I”m in a hurry to get to work and you’re asking me to wait” to be interpreted by the barista as if the customer is being rude.
And actually for many people, confrontation is very difficult. Think how many times you’ve been to a restaurant and thought you wanted your meal a little differently (meat less done, or whatever) and it wasn’t perfect and you didn’t say anything at all.
The whole encounter between barista and customer trying to ask for a drink remake is fraught with anxiety from the get-go.
And I will say, I’ve seen many baristas handle it SO gracefully!! I remember one time at UV I ordered a iced green tea – not modified, that’s it. I tasted it and thought it tasted unsweetened. I asked the barista who said she was sure she sweetened it. She very politely just said, “let me remake it for you” and next thing I knew, a new green tea was there. It can be perfectly fine and I hope for that every single time! 🙂
Great idea! I find that a lot of people are too shy to come back when something is not right, this might help 🙂
There’s some small irony that this is written on the disposable cups. When I order a solo espresso “for here” I do so because a) the ceramic cup is not disposable and b) because the cup can be preheated with a small amount of hot water, keeping the drink at the right serving temperature.
Too often I’m given a paper, disposable cup even when I ask for a ceramic cup. When I point out the error I’m told that they don’t actually have ceramic cups on hand.
This is something they should tell me before I give them my money.
I’m not too shy to come back or to let them know, I’m just tired of poor service.
@AC – Sorry this is happening to you. If it’s the same store over and over, maybe it’s time to touch base with the district manager, and find out if they can get for-here ware in. Most every Seattle store has a full array of for-here ware. Though when all’s said and done, considering that something like 80% of the Starbucks business is to go, this still looks like a good move to put it on the cups.
Ok this morning at a SB not my usual local store, but I have been there many times. The partner behind the register sort of knew me but I gave her my drink the way I like it and she wrote it on the cup. Fine. The partner doing the drink OMG she just was not listening or looking at the cup and it took me three times to have her get it right. She just did not want to listen. She assumed she had to do it her way. Never been in this store where this has happened.
I just recently had an experience where a ‘tall’ pour over, in my personal cup, with that little line that so many baristas seem to know nothing about…inside the cup…for a ‘tall’…was given to me about an inch lower than that bottom line. I was in a hurry, the partner on register, who made it, was very nice, (and seemed new) but when I discovered how really ‘roomy’ ..and no, did not ask for ‘room’ this was, he was very busy and the girl on bar appeared to be experienced so I showed it to her. That was way too much time and conversation, trying to explain: this is not right for a tall pour-over, I don’t have time to wait for another bla bla bla. Her basic reply was: well, what do you expect us to do? I told her ‘maybe you should comp my drink?’, very politely but it was all just getting TOO stupid. I don’t want to be the one, as a customer, who decides what ‘should’ be done etc. I expect the partners to (pretty much) know what ‘should’ be done. And, from the beginning, the girl on bar had a really nasty attitude. This is an old store, one I used to go to everyday.
I just expect better. I expect correctness or at least kindness.
Interesting Denise R we both had experiences where we were let down re our drink order. Agree with you. Training issues? Will this wording on the cup then make a difference? As I had said before, I guess it depends on the partner and the store.
Again, the common thread of training and attitude stands out.
Starbucks can write whatever, put the whole darn training manual for that matter, on the cup and it will do no good because too many people, baristas and customers just don’t care. The customer feels entitled and the barista is just there to put in his/her hours (being sure to get their breaks).
I’m sorry folks, blame it on my age, but really, not that many years ago the poor barista and PITA customer were rare, not the rule.
It makes no difference trying to argue what came first. The bottom line is that the barista has a job to do and if they cannot give 110% then it is time to move on. I am tired of hearing “pay me more, pay me more, pay me more,” and a thousand excuses why they cannot take responsibility for their training.
There still are some really good Baristas (notice, they deserve a capital “B”), but they are a vanishing breed and Starbucks Suits are losing sight of what is important because Starbucks has gotten so big that they really do not value the individual employee or customer. They feel that there are a billion new ones out there. They can keep pouring new customers and employees in the bucket, but the hole of customers and employees leaving is soon going to be too large for the “refill” to keep up.
Dad Cooks well said and thank you for your latest comment. Will SB Suits as you say hear you?
@dadcooks – I agree, but the truth is sbux really doesn’t care on “that” level. This “slogan” on the signs and now the cups is simply a marketing tactic – the easiest thing they can do to make it look like they care. But they know most won’t complain, and the addiction to sugar, caffeine or “gold” status will keep most coming back no matter what they do.
I actually feel the worst for those that actually do care (@renee @kristen, @melody, etc.)
It’s hard. I know you’re paying a premium for a drink and I want to get it right, but fer cryin’ out loud — don’t get grumpy at me when I make your drink hot and you wanted a Frappuccino. If you want that, SAY THAT. We have so many customers that are so lazy, they can’t be bothered to say the full name of their drink then get upset when it’s made “incorrectly”.
@Kristen – thanks for caring
I don’t work for the company, but I’ve worked as a barista at a small family owned café years ago. My heart goes out to the hardworking partners who are often grossly underappreciated and underpaid. I’m a regular at a couple Starbucks locations with some of the nicest staff. In my observations, more often than not, drinks are being remade as a result of customer error. I’ve seen many customers ask for an iced mocha, when they wanted a Mocha Frappuccino, or they order a Caramel Macchiato when they wanted an iced non-fat Caramel Macchiato. I’m not saying that mistakes don’t happen behind the bar, but I think that it’s often a result of customers being impatient. Most baristas I know ask the customer several question before marking the cups (i.e. hot or iced, with or w/o whip, milk preference) and sometimes customers just don’t listen. That’s just my two cents.
@Denise – How rare it is to see them ever comp. a drink anymore! They used to give those out for mistakes or long waits, like giving out candy to kids on Halloween. Not anymore! When they do comp. a drink……. Is it me? Or does it seem like they do it for those that I see as not their regular customers? I feel when mistakes are made, that because I am a regular customer, that it is okay and no big deal. The only thing I can make of it, is because they know I will come back anyway. I know it is impossible to know who all their regular customers are at any store, but based on any given time of day, I can pretty much tell who the majority of us are. The last couple of comped drinks that I have seen given away, were not to those I saw as regulars. I’ve seen that happen maybe twice in the past year, where as years ago I saw it happen multiple times in a week. Maybe it depends on the SM or DM as I don’t frequent the same store(s) as I used to, but my usual spot (you know the one Denise) isn’t so generous regarding comped drinks for mistakes. Comps are on the decline and mistakes are way up!
@CD – I’ve been meaning to come back to this thread, but wasn’t in a place where I could easily comment yesterday. Don’t feel sorry for me. I’m just sorry that you’re having poor experiences.
Overwhelmingly, my experiences are fine. My drink is rarely wrong. Things go fine at the registers. Like 95% of the time. If others don’t have that experience, I’m sorry to hear that. I went to Oregon yesterday, and visited Starbucks in Woodburn and Beaverton, and also had an A+ experience. This can’t be just a PNW thing. I wish some partners who lived outside of the PNW would chime in! 😉
I have met 3-month partners who think they know it all. And I’ve met partners who don’t understand that keeping your customers happy is absolutely the best thing ever, and that the customer does come first. They’re the ones paying money. However, here in the PNW, I’ve watched CSR certificates being handed out, and it looks like things are mostly going well.
Denise – My reaction would have been to ask for the coffee to be remade so that my cup would be full. But yes, the partner should handle the situation with grace. There’s an increasing trend to be angry at customers – this is not a Starbucks things but rather national. I’ve seen articles that take customer service and turn it upside down on its head. Like as if we’re in a current era where it’s cool to suggest that the customer is always wrong, or every little thing that the customer does gets interpreted as “rude”.
It’s so hard to get people to spend money. Such a dangerous attitude. But again, I will say that my own personal experiences at Starbucks have been great. Last Friday night, I was at the Queen Anne Starbucks. I saw something new going on with the Reserve coffee menu. I struck up a conversation with Barbara, the ASM (I later learned). It was incredible. She’s so passionate about Starbucks. I walked out with a great cup of coffee and felt like I’d had a great five minutes of conversation. As I have said many times, my own personal experiences are 95% fine. If something really went wrong, I’d email a district manager, probably.
@Melody: I would’ve been glad to wait and have my pour-over re-made, assuming someone (and there were only 2 of them at the time, one on bar, one on register, who made it very incorrectly the first time…..seriously, this is ‘just’ pour-over. When the coffee comes out significantly below the ‘tall mark’, the partner should notice that. ) Sorry that off-side rant….assuming it would be made correctly the second time, which would have to take some conversation by someone to the partner making the coffee. But, as I said in my above comment, I was walking out the door and really didn’t have time to wait for another pour-over.
@Chgo: I totally agree with you about the comp cards. And the irony of who gets them! That happened to me just last week: I was behind a woman at the register who was trying to understand why she got what she got and paid what she paid….it really wasn’t that complicated but 3 partners came up and very slowly, over and over and in different ways, tried to explain it to her. I really needed to place my order, which was going to be 2 frappuccinos and get to an appnt with them. I waited too long, imo. And just as you said, out comes the comp-card for the woman who couldn’t understand…and no, they didn’t make her drink incorrectly. Basically she was just unhappy with the cost and seemed to want to know a way around that! I actually commented to one of the partners, as I looked at my watch (no one was in line behind me),: I think I’m the one who should be getting comped a drink here. This was definitely over a 5min conversation, using all 3 partners on the floor. Of course, I was not given a drink card. And I agree with you, they used to be used way more frequently and on those of us who possibly spend the most time and money there!
(I did get my drink comped at the store about the pour-over but as I said, not a pleasant experience)
As some of us agree, Sbux should maybe be concerned with their ‘loyal’ customers and not the ones who seem to be trying to ‘get over on them’ so much of the time. But, of course, they’re taking us for granted, I get it. I also believe in karma….
Free drink coupons are (more often than not) tools to get problem customers to go away.
Generally, if people are waiting too long at my store drink coupons are not given, but we will give free drinks for that visit. (Drive thru or front register). Obviously, if there is a line we can’t give everyone free drinks, but in your case, Denise, we probably would have comped one of your beverages. I would have, at least. 🙂
This is off topic…. starting tomorrow treat receipt is back. Take advantage and enjoy!
I appreciate that they are advertising that I can have my drink re-made (whatever the company’s motivation for putting this sentiment on the cup). I am often apprehensive about approaching the barista to have my drink re-made if I notice it is not to my liking when I have the opportunity to have it remedied (I often need to run out the door before I have a chance to try my drink). However, the times I have asked for my drink to be re-made I have always been warmly, and apologetically, received (both in Colorado and Seattle)!
Once, a long time ago, I asked for extra caramel on my iced caramel macchiato since I always thought they were being kinda stingy with the stuff. The barista took that to mean covering the cup walls with caramel, which was entirely too much caramel. I just wanted a little extra, not to actually eat caramel but even though I tasted it and didn’t like it (and eventually couldn’t finish it because it was like drinking caramel), I didn’t ask for it to be remade because I felt so stupid for asking for something extra, and not liking the outcome.
Suffice to say, I’ve never asked for extra caramel again. ><
I obviously don’t speak for the company but personally I feel as though telling someone to do something a certain way versus explaining to them why we uphold each of our standards makes a huge difference with my team. I try to help open my partner’s eyes to only always listen for dissatisfied customers, but also watching out for non-verbal ques that almost anyone makes when they truly aren’t enjoying their beverage/food. On more than one occasion we have approached a customer first and began inquiring about their drink so we could make it to better. There are so many ways for that miscommunication to happen; a new partner that didn’t catch it all, a partner that got distracted while taking the order or making the drink, misread handwriting, whoop missed that code, thought I pushed all the buttons for my shots, blenders or lobby got too loud and I missed one modifier to your order, last but not least maybe that just because as partners we have normally already had our caffeine and as customers most have not we have an advantage and someone forgot to say part of their order. No matter what happened it doesn’t matter as partners and the faces of our company we are responsible to simply make it right. My team is trained that it doesn’t matter who made the mistake (customer or partner) plain and simple I never want to hear blame placed. All that matters is that a mistake was made and we are sorry. We then apologize, verify what is wrong with the drink so we can immediately correct that and make it right. Plus, if you do have a bad experience we as managers appericiated the opportunity to make it right. If a partner was rude I know I always appreciate the opportunity to listen to our customer so I can have the appropriate conversation with my partner so they can fully understand the effects of their actions and how from the customers perspective they came off.
I hope that this will be a renewed opportunity for a reevaluation of our commitment to provide customers with the experience that they are hoping for every time. Unfortunately, there absolutely are areas in which training is simply not there. I am a shift in the East Coast area, and I transferred here from halfway across the country; an incredible number of partners simply never learned standard or routine. I usually go with simple espresso drinks or coffee, but I just don’t order frappuccinos here anymore; I don’t believe I have seen a single one made “correctly.” And it’s passed down, so partners don’t even realize that there’s a reason people complain about their frappuccino being too sweet/strong/icy/milky/etc.
I understand the back side of the counter, because I have certainly had many customers who get the wrong drink because they didn’t say iced, or forgot to specify “frappuccino”, or didn’t mention “vanilla,” or something of the sort; but as far as drinks actually being messed up, a barista can’t live up to the barista promise if he or she isn’t trained to know how *not* to mess it up.
I’ve had a few bad experiences this week, the most recent today. Has the rules for redeeming Gold Level rewards changed unannounced? I’m used to redeeming rewards by getting a Frappuccinno with a few extra syrups and a shot of espresso here/there. But today, it seems I was charged for the extras (syrups, shots) that were once free. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve redeemed a reward, and I usually redeem them at the same store.
Aaron, the rules haven’t changed. But, I have seen this happen before when the partner on till hasn’t got the drink highlighted on their screen, but perhaps one of the modifiers like the extra shot instead.
I’m not sure why, but occasionally that will make the drink free but not the extra add-ons. Very easily fixed by cancelling the reward, highlighting the drink itself, and ringing the reward through again. A less experienced, or less curious :), partner may not have been able to figure out what happened.
I love the Barista Promise. Short, simple, and direct. And being printed on the cups is a continuous reminder of the love and care EACH beverage deserves as I make them. #lovewhatyoudo
The promise…what about my health, safety, security and peace of mind ?
Is a callback not possible? 30+ days later still no word. Tried to email corp and the top three contacts. Mr. Schultz was not able to be reached. Email returned next vp and one more contact.
What good is the coffee or tea if they do not care about me and each individual customer..
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Ok so maybe this is an added nice touch, but I am not sure it totally makes a difference. I still see customers upset with their drinks. I see the signs in the stores and there too am not sure it makes too much of a difference. I sure hope that every customer gets the drink they want and sure hope partners make it as a customer wants it. I guess this is a subjective view and this varies from store to store.