Do you love grabbing a Starbucks drink in the Disney parks or at your local Starbucks location? You’re not alone!
Starbucks has a lot of fans and has announced some big things recently. It has been adding delivery nationwide and its rewards program recently changed as well. But an even bigger change has hit the company recently and it’s one that may impact your future coffee experience.
According to The Wall Street Journal, this week, Laxman Narasimhan, officially stepped into the role of Starbucks CEO and he did something unique to prepare for the transition.
Narasimhan was an outside hire and was formerly a PepsiCo executive, and he worked for months to immerse himself in the operations of Starbucks. How? Well, he actually “spent 40 hours training to become a certified barista and visited stores and facilities in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.” Did YOU spot him during a Starbucks visit?
While the company has hit record sales recently, Starbucks has acknowledged that its service has suffered. Narasimhan has indicated that “he plans to regularly work alongside baristas in cafes” to gain an understanding of the issues behind getting customers their coffee. He intends to work four hours in a different Starbucks store each month and he is actually expecting other senior leaders to do the same.
One problem Narasimhan has already identified? According to him, Starbucks has too many different pairings of lids and cups. He said, “We’ve got things to do to become more disciplined.” So maybe this is something Narasimhan could seek to change in the future to make things more streamlined.
“We have got to find ways to ensure that we do listen and stay connected,” Narasimhan said. Starbucks plans to spend billions of dollars over the coming 3 years in an attempt to improve its stores and the situation with its employees.
Interestingly, Starbucks is just coming out of a situation similar to what Disney is experiencing with a returning CEO. Narasimhan has taken over from departing CEO Howard Schultz. Schultz acquired Starbucks some time ago, built it into an international brand, stepped down in 2000, returned to be its CEO again from 2008 to 2017 (not unlike how Bob Iger returned to Disney), and then came back again in 2022 as a longer-term leader. He is set to remain on Starbucks’ executive board.
But Narasimhan is CEO now and he is different from Schultz. Narasimhan said, “I’m different from him. I bring a different set of capabilities.”
Narasimhan shared that he has found room to reduce some shortages and waste in Starbucks’ supply chain. He has also indicated that new equipment being introduced will improve the coffee quality, while changes in the payment technology they use should help Starbucks’ expansion globally.
While spending time as a Starbucks barista, he also worked to process loyalty cards but found that sometimes he had to scan customers’ phones several times for payment. According to Narasimhan, Starbucks has to be practical about what its employees can do during peak hours simply because of that morning coffee rush.
So be on the lookout for potential changes with Starbucks in the future, and see if you happen to spot Narasimhan working as a barista at a location near you!
We know Disney fans love their Starbucks cups. Remember the craze from the 50th Anniversary Starbucks cup? We couldn’t forget. For more Disney food news, follow us at DFB!
All The Starbucks Cups You Can Get At Disney World
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