When you take on the role of manager you are hooked into a bunch of dynamic relationships not the least of which is between you and your boss. Unfortunately we can tend to miss one another in these situations and this breeds tension. Today we chat about pursuing clarity as a manager for the benefit of all.
I am so excited to welcome Erika Vonie to the show! Erika is the Director of Coffee for Trade Coffee and she is the professionals professional. Her long and accomplished career in coffee has been comprised of great success in retail, management, green buying, quality control, customer relations, event management, competition, and much more.
Erika's energy and drive to learn, grow, and contribute to the industry is made very obvious in this conversation with is essentially a retrospective of her career. We talk about the road into coffee, competition experiences, the highs and lows of retail, what motivated her to go into green buying and the producing side of coffee, what would she change if she could go back, what is she most proud of, and her advice on how to make a difference from our places in retail.
I think you will certainly benefit from and be inspired by what Erika shares here. Enjoy!
It's Founder Friday! Today we talk with the Co-Founder of Kusanya Cafe located in Englewood, Chicago, USA, Phil Sipka. Kusanya Cafe is an all resident owned and run non-profit coffee shop that has been providing an amazing gathering spot and 3rd place for the Englewood neighborhood for the past 5 years. It is truly a great example of what can happen when a community comes together and build something together.
In this conversation we discuss the vision of Kusanya, the years long struggle to get the cafe open, community organization, working as a non-profit shop, opening up the space to be guided and co-created with the neighborhood, hiring and empowering staff, winning the trust of the neighborhood, and much more.
This is a small but mighty example of what revitalization and renewal can look like in the face of gentrification.
Thanks to our sponsors!
Dysfunction in the cafe's functionality is something we all deal with and have to manage. Not everything works according to plan or the way it is supposed to. How we deal with this will determine how people see you as a leader and how they see the cafe. Will it be as apathetic and disengaged? Or empathetic and actively engaged? Today we chat about the acceptance of dysfunction the plagues cafes and what to do about it.
There is a whole world of chemical components that make up your cup of coffee. Knowing more about that world will help us become better operators and better professionals as it will enable us to increase the quality and consistency of what we serve. Today we get to learn a bit about organic acids and the importance of coffee science with the former Director of Science and Technology for the SCAA, and Director of Research & Technology for Coffee Intelligence, Joseph A. Rivera.
We will talk about his journey and work as a coffee scientist, what are the main organic acids to be aware of, what are some relationships between origin and processing and how much of a particular acid is in a coffee, caffeine, cold brew, and why we need to care about science in the coffee industry.
It is my intention to explore the science behind what we do in the shop in future episodes of Keys to the Shop and I am thrilled and honored to have Joseph on the show to start us off on that journey.
Communication is a two-way street. The way we operate though makes it very difficult for communication to flow back up the chain of authority in the shop. This is a problem for both customers and baristas alike and today we chat about some ways to create a culture where feedback is prioritized and welcomed instead of forgot or avoided.
Nothing helps you grow like great books! In this Vol.2 of Essential Books we talk about 5 books that will have a huge impact on your career and business. They cover everything from team building, problem solving for managers, and managing up the chain of authority -to entrepreneurship and an in-depth look at the role the coffee shop plays in your community.
These are truly powerful works that I believe should be read by every coffee service professional.
Coffee shop managers need to delegate and assign tasks to the team. This includes checklists, chore charts, and special projects. A critical part of effective delegation is holding people accountable for the work done in the cafe. Today we chat about how approving delegated work will empower you, your staff, and ultimately the shop.
Today is a special day because we get to chat with Deb Kaminsky, the Director of Food Service Marketing for Pacific Natural Foods. When you see the Pacific Barista Series, it's success in the market, and the incredible support Pacific gives baristas, that's Deb. Throughout her career her heart has been to nourish people and in this interview we get to know her story, the story of the Baristas Series' incredible growth, and the passion that that drives Deb to support, listen to, and advance the cause of the barista craft.
I love her encouraging and affirming spirit and I know you will leave this conversation thankful to have a leader like Deb as an example and cheerleader.