Starbucks Baristas Coached on How to Handle 'Aggressive Political Opinions' as Schultz Mulls POTUS Bid
Sign of the times:
The coffee chain known for its progressive corporate culture offered suggestions in its "Barista Need-To-Know" weekly newsletter on how to "diffuse [sic] the situation" if anyone "shares aggressive political opinions" in the store.
"Employees may be asked questions by customers or hear media speculation about Howard's potential political intentions," reads the notice clearly written by lawyers. Employees should know that "we respect everyone's opinion. Our goal is simply to create a warm and welcoming space where we can all gather, as a community, over great coffee."
If asked specifically about Schultz, employees are advised to say: "Howard's future plans are up to him."
It's difficult to have much sympathy for the Starbucks HQ. They made this bed, and now they have to lie in it. Or more accurately, their stores' employees will. Can you imagine taking an entry-level job — especially in this hot job market — where your responsibilities would have to include defusing angry political debates?
Easier just to try and make a half double decaffeinated half-caf with a twist of lemon.