12 little-known facts about Starbucks
Mental Floss recently spoke with a handful of Starbucks’ employees to learn some behind-the-scenes secrets. Here are the things they revealed:
- Starbucks employees are referred to as partners, not baristas. They’re referred to as “partners” because a year into their employment, they get a small percentage in the company.
- The apron color means something. Black aprons were given during a time when something called a Coffee Master program was in effect. Other apron variants include a red version for holidays and aprons with embroidered names to signify seniority.
- Partners aren’t amused by the funny names you use. Names that have been overheard include Captain America, Spider-Man, Daddy, and Barry Allen (a.k.a. the Flash).
- Partners sometimes have to deal with customers who won’t give their names. In the event of a no-name situation, partners will usually just call out the drink order.
- Working at Starbucks makes you a caffeine fiend. One of the big benefits of being a Starbucks partner? The free coffee. One big drawback? The free coffee.
- Partners might “decaf” rude customers. That’s when a caffeinated order is swapped out for decaf out of revenge.
- Partners are happy to serve your dog a “puppuccino.” Partners are generally pretty happy to see dogs and may even offer to prepare a “puppacino”–a cup full of whipped cream.
- Partners know you get confused by the drink sizes. A tall is 12 ounces; a grande is 16 ounces; a venti hot, 20 ounces; a venti cold, 24 ounces; and a trenta (only available for certain drinks), 31 ounces.
- New hires are known as “green beans.” During that training process, they’re referred to as “green beans.”
- Partners want to create a connection with you. Starbucks partners have a corporate mandate to be friendly. It’s called the “customer connection,” and it’s highly valued by the company.
- Partners can run out of patience with drive-thru customers. A good percentage of people who were rude at the speaker box seem to be nicer when they approach the window.
- Latte art can be tricky for partners. It’s really difficult and a learning curve because of the shape and size of Starbucks pitchers.