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Coffee Shop Attitudes


Robby

I recommend that everyone take an afternoon and sit at the counter at your local coffeeshop. It may be a national chain like Starbucks, or a local place. No matter where you visit, a few hours of observing the team at work will change your perspective. You’ll learn quite a bit about customer service, about personal interactions, and about getting things done.

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The clearest lesson at any coffee shop is the importance of social graces. When customers walk in the door, a cheerful greeting rings out. “Good morning!” “How’s it going?” “Welcome!” These phrases really help people to feel more comfortable. They also help keep the environment friendly. Practically every work environment would benefit from some friendly comments here and there.

Second, there’s the ability to ramp up and ramp down. When the line grows long, the team leaps into action. People start to work quickly and efficiently. It’s clear that everyone is trying to help out. Likewise, when the action slows, the staff is comfortable. They clean, they organize, they chat with regulars. Adaptability is key to a happy coffee shop.

Finally, a coffee shop is a place which mixes work and life. Customers may be there at important business meetings or working on key projects, or they may be old friends catching up. We tend to have trouble making clear boundaries in so much of our lives, but at the coffeeshop there lines are clear. There are customers and employees and the store is either open or closed. Either you’re part of the buzzing community or you are elsewhere.

Learn the lessons of coffeeshop life, and apply them to your own workplace!

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About the Blogger: Robby Slaughter is a productivity speaker and expert. He is a principal with a AccelaWork, an Indianapolis consulting firm.

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Wed, July 13 2011 » Corporate Culture, Time Management, Work/Life Balance

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