yesterday i had an exceptionally good day at work. not only did mr. split personality assistant manager turn over a totally amazing shift, my manager has been going out of his way to make sure his baristas are getting the hours they need. he’s even found shifts for us at other stores, which really is going above and beyond.
we also have two newbies who are super fast learners, and a third newbie who isn’t catching on as fast as we’d all like, but is putting every effort forth to get the job done. so even with newbies and newly transferred assistant manager, my little bux is starting to feel like very harmonious environment.
but (and you all knew there was a ‘but’ coming, didn’t you?) we are now having our brewing event.
bux has a brewing event every year and basically this is one time the execs in seattle ask us to REALLY push our espresso and coffee makers.
i am not a fan of the brewing event and here’s why:
1. there is a reason i’m not a car salesman. i abhor ‘selling’ a product to a consumer. what i love about being a barista is the customer comes to me, orders what they want, and i make it. i don’t have to approach them, chat them up, and pray that they’re willing to drop a grand on an espresso maker so that i can pay my rent.
2. it’s hard enough to pull a barista off the floor to grind some beans in the middle of a rush. what’s worse is to have a barista off the floor for twenty minutes to demo a coffee machine to a customer who really isn’t interested in buying it anyway.
3. it’s a bit of a sham. they want us to entice customers to drop a lot of money on an item bux doesn’t really want them to use. honestly, if everyone made their own coffee and espresso, bux wouldn’t be as profitable a company as it is.
the one item i feel comfortable pushing during the brewing event is the french press.
because they’re relatively inexpensive, and it’s very difficult to get french pressed coffee in a café (plus it tastes SO much better than regular drip coffee), so i don’t feel bad about peddling a french press because i truly believe in the product and bux doesn’t prepare coffee in this manner (well, unless you specifically request it, and even though the barista will smile and says ‘no problem!’ they are cursing you inwardly).
of course i’m going to be a good sport and demo machines when customers ask about them as well as offering to explain why our coffee makers are superior to those you find in the grocery market. but i’m really glad i only have to do it once a year.
partner rant: please don’t tell newbies, ‘oh, you don’t have to really clean that – just wipe it down. brat cleaned it last night so we don’t have to do it tonight.’ don’t pass on your bad habits to newbies, and don’t tell them they can half-ass things if i’ve worked the night before. that’s just wrong on every level.