It's Founder Friday! Today we are honored to hear from the owner of The Arrow Coffeehouse, Erica Escalante. Erica is a 10 year veteran of the specialty industry and went from Starbucks barista to coffee shop owner. Her story is one of extraordinary hard work, dedication, building relationships, constant learning, vulnerability, and servant leadership. Her perspectives on communication, making business decisions, hiring, and where she draws energy and joy in her busy life will leave you refreshed and enlivened to work hard to do good.
SHIFT BREAK #7 : At the heart of every health organization is a prioritized and regular system of communication that gives a voice and an ear to their staff. The one-on-one meeting is a very powerful tool to bring cohesion, give clarity, and increase morale across the company. In today's Shift Break we discuss what it looks like to implement this meeting and why it is so critical to a thriving and positive work culture.
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Did you say "Instant specialty coffee"?! Yup, that's right. Not only does it taste 300 times better than traditional instant but it may well change the way you think about accessibility, consumer engagement, and how we provide value to the end user. In this episode we are joined by the founder of Voila (One of the pioneers of instant specialty coffee) Kent Sheridan. Kent and I discuss the evolution of his company, the philosophy behind their process and approach to no-compromise quality. Does association with instant coffee damage the reputation of specialty or enhance its value? What is behind the rise of convenience specialty products, and what should retail shops take away and learn from this movement? Find out here and take some note because this is sure to give you some ideas for your approach to specialty and engaging a wider audience.
SHIFT BREAK #6 : Today we are exploring a mentality practiced in cafe leadership that is a microcosm of gentrification. Changing this behavior and mindset can stop coffee shops from being forces that aid in cultural displacement and turn into spaces that aid in cultural enrichment of both their internal and external communities.
In coffee shops we know a thing or two about being stressed! It can range from nagging to debilitating just with a single shift. If you want to experience more calm and peace of mind in the cafe, even in the midst of the business then this episode will definitely help. Today we are talking with celebrated mental wellness counselor and host of the Practice of the Practice podcast, Joe Sanok. Joe share a lot of great insights into the story behind stress, Brain optimization, how staff and owners can manage and reduce stress while at work, the relationship between systems and stress, and helps us walk away with some tools that will bring the well being that we need to sustain a long and healthy career begins the bar.
SHIFT BREAK #5 : Conferences, trade shows, and podcasts all bring together people and ideas that help us grow and get answers to questions we have that unlock new levels in our careers. The question is, why wait until a conference comes around or an episode comes out to ask your question or connect with those ideas and people? Today on Shift Break we discuss our tendency to isolate ourselves until special events and the benefit of reaching out to those who we respect and can learn from in our industry. This has been a great help to me in my career and I hope this episode inspires you to take action and connect to the community in a deeper and more direct way. You can do it!
We all want a fulfilling career in coffee but often times we feel trapped and disappointed with where we are and cannot see the next move. Enter Lee Safar. Lee is the owner of "Map it Forward" and host of the "Map it Forward Live Podcast". She has amassed a world of experience and knowledge in her over 15 years of working in coffee and draws on both her expertise and other industry success stories to teach you how you can map out an amazing career, grow you business, and be a true professional.
In this conversation we discuss how she came to start Map it Forward, what surprised her about the state of professionalism in baristas, what dysfunctional behaviors owners and managers engage in that hold themselves and others back, how to stop the blame game, creating a win-win for for both employer and employee, setting goals, and advice for what both baristas and leaders can do immediately to start to Map it Forward and build a successful coffee career.
It was a great time chatting with Lee. She and her work are very much kindred spirits to KTTS on many levels and I hope you find thins episode to be inspiring and helpful.
SHIFT BREAK #4 : We are in the hospitality business and we recognize that the guest experience hinges on how they are treated. There is, however, a pervasive mindset and set of behaviors that make the customer an enemy in our minds and colors the way we think and act toward them, which ultimately damages their coffee experience and the industry at large. This week we talk about how we make the customer the enemy and what we can do to solve this toxic problem that lives in so many cafes.
Today we get to talk with the 2018 U.S. Brewers Cup Champion, Becca Woodard! It was such a pleasure to chat about the details that went into her fantastic performance, the fascinating story of her competition coffee, her personal drive and the message she delivered regarding changing systems, her mission as a specialty coffee ambasador, and some challenges to the coffee community around how we can become a more diverse and inclusive community.
Becca is a humble and inspiring champion and you will be all the better for listening to her in this conversation. I hope you enjoy!