Winning against the chain store

Yesterday, I sat down in a store that’s part of a Montana-based coffee shop chain. I wanted a quick cup and I had about an hour to write before a young man’s Eagle Board that was down the street, so┬áthis location was a perfect fit. I drove past Starbucks to reach this place. I try […]

Indivisible

photo credit: Selma90 Howard Schultz is doing what few large corporate CEOs have done: Following up rhetoric with leadership, action and money. While I prefer freshly-roasted beans from local roasters and rarely do Starbucks outside of airports, I will stop in this week in order to support this. The post title? It’s inscribed on a […]

Doing some coffee math

Saw this a few days ago from @dontheideaguy. I’m trying to figure out why every other place that sells beans or ground coffee doesn’t make a point of being happy to take ANY Starbucks bag (not just the “specially marked bags”), year-round. Toss that old bag or make an example of it. Staple it to […]

What’s Scary? Ordinary coffee, Michael Jackson and a dancing tiger named Mike

So…what did you do to have a little fun? Here are a couple of examples: One of the many coffee shops that I prod now and then came up with this (among other things) for Halloween. Note the R.I.P. sign, then check out the 2nd image. Below in the hand of the chalk outline, a […]

What local coffee shops can learn from SEC football

photo credit: michelleannb Makes no sense, I know. Bear with me, it’ll clear up shortly. I want you to read this story about ESPN’s new network for Southeast Conference (SEC) football. Don’t wonder why (too much), just trust that there’s an applicable lesson here and go read it. Wordsmithing Now it’s time to do a […]

Someone keyed my Karma

photo credit: jonmatthew photography Month before last during a coaching session, I had a pretty frank conversation with a client about freedom. Not the Constitutional kind of freedom, but freedom from the ball and chain that a business can become. I don’t mean that in a bad way, just that it can become a restriction […]

Coffee: The new “Do you want fries with that?”

photo credit: Jsome1 Anyone who has studied business or marketing for any period of time has looked at the impact that one sentence has had on McDonald’s. It gets used in sales training every single day because almost everyone is familiar with that upsell. In some cases, it has become a punch line. The increment […]

Starbucks strikes back against “theft”

photo credit: paintMonkey http://www.theswom.org/profiles/blogs/starbucks-is-ready-to-tell It’s a nicely done video with just a small rough spot here and there. I like how Howard thanks his staff. It’s certainly a good example of communicating your company’s values in ways other than organically. It’s not theft when you give it away Most interesting is the claim that that […]

What makes you shine like a Ferrari?

photo credit: SuperFantastic Imagine getting laid off at 63 years of age simply because you’re old. Now they won’t tell you that because you could sue them for that. Instead, they lay you off because another (ie: younger) employee doesn’t have to make as much. Like a kick in the gut, you’d think. But not […]

The Intersection of Policy and Customer Service

Joel Spolsky is a household name to most people in the software business. He’s been blogging for years about Microsoft, customer service, the software business and even how to build out an office in New York City. Not long ago, he started blogging for Inc. Magazine. Today, he’s our guest poster and talks about something […]