Being an established barista in your store means....
You are trusted
When most people apply for the position of a coffee slinger its to add another stepping stone to their wants and goals in life. In the first few months its no different than a fast food restaurant. People zipping in and out of the café with ease and confidence that they will get what they need to start or finish their day. Its hard to remember names when you are still learning the craft of brewing and beverage making. But as the months continue to build so does your knowledge as a barista. You come to realize that your regular customers trust your craftsmanship and know you will make it right for them. You are no longer the barista that ask all the questions as much as you are the baristas who now answers most of them. Your managers, co-workers, and customers look up to you and your decision making. They trust you to make the right choices to enhance their day.
You watch people grow
Its a no brainer you get a daily dose of chit chat with your fellow co- workers and thier everyday lives. But the generic customer service you provide eventually turns into small talk. Then you start noticing things. In those 2 minute conversations you learn of the good and bad in their lives. You learn about their children. Their struggles. What they ate last night and why that determined to downsize from a 20 oz white mocha to a 16oz. You'll see customers coming from just starting high school to seeing them on their way back from graduation. You will see your regular customer in a strong relationship getting their usual everyday with their loved one to walking in solo after the decision to have a divorce BUT only to see them again finding love and happiness with someone else. At some point you are almost like the old oak tree that some make it a routine to pass by everyday. You see people grow from some of the trials and errors in life.
Most importantly you're family
And this part!! This part right here! Hits you harder than watching Mufasa falling off the cliff in Disney's The Lion King. So think about the following I mentioned above. Its your job to provide amazing service to customers. Some you see once year, once a month, once a week and sometimes once a day. In the few minutes you have with them you exchange words of life from both sides of the handoff counter. When neutral people you know come to pass, get married, or have children that news is brought to you immediately. You all exchange gifts during Christmas, attend their son's or daughter's wedding, graduation or birthday. When people come to see you for your its no longer JUST for the beverage....but for you. You are apart of their life.
Being established in a store is an amazing feeling and I really hope when you are standing behind the espresso you have been operating for the past 1-10 years you reflect upon how many people you have made smile.
9 year Starbucks LS partner
Certified Coffee Master
2015 LS Barista Championship area winner