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April 01, 2007


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the eddie veder version of "Masters of War" comes to mind when I read this part about him wishing partners were at his funeral.

and i'm sure i'll get flamed to no end for that in this thread. Hell I probably deserve it. But it's how I feel.


A packaged public relations "event." He sent a "hand signed" note with the same "keep it small" phrase to all the managers.

That's fine - he needs to spiff up the image a bit.


I wonder if he would come to my funeral?


*agreed with BSR*

James the Barista

Yeah, a single man would come to 137,000 different funerals and if you read the article he only gives his wife 1 percent of his time...sick I say...sick.

Lucky McBucky

I, for one, would be at the funeral. Thanks for giving so much Jim, but don't forget about the family. Find a work/life balance.


1% to the wife? She's used to it? Gee, he sounds like a great husband :/

i hope this is an april fool's joke...cause i can't stop laughing my ass off


Go to his funeral?

Yeah sure, if we get tips.


Oh, yeah... I remember the hand-signed note he sent to my SM....

He addressed it to her LAST name, not her first name.

That would be fine, if her name was something like Sydney Sydney, but it ain't...


I would go if this was a paid event.

Florida Barista

Wow he is good at good PR. No way would I go to his funeral.


i would love to attend his firing. of course, as ceo he would get some huge parchute pay-off but i'd still love to see his wormy ass get canned. i wonder if howard ever writes him up a corrective action?

old school barista

Can I get berevment pay and time off?

blackhorse 6

So speaking of upper management, does anyone know if partners are protected if they tell upper management about labor abuses. I have had overtime deleted a few times, a few months ago. Additionally, as an ASM I was running a store without a SM. The previous few managers were working closer to 50 hrs and I was told by my DM to ensure things get done.

This led to me working well over 40hrs a week for a few months and of course not being paid for it. A new manager has took over and I am back to working 40 hrs. But in the back of my mind I know this is wrong. If the district does it to me, I know they will do it to other partners. I guess I haven't had the leadership courage, I just worry about losing my job. Any suggestions partners?


I was there, too, and you have 3 options:

1) Take it to your RDO without caring whether you keep your job or not.

2) Suck it up and take it.

3) Step down to barista

I took steps 2 and 3. I would go with 1 if I could do it again.


"and if you read the article he only gives his wife 1 percent of his time...sick I say...sick."

She'd probably be thrilled with 1% - the article actually says she gets one-half of 1 percent.

That he actually wasted his limited family time to figure that % out is just wrong.



Just a question, if there was no store manager and you were the ASM running the store, weren't you the one doing payroll every Monday? From what I understand, once it's been transmitted it can't be changed without either and SM/DM AND the partner calling Partner contact center and verifying the information.

blackhorse 6


The change in my overtime occurred when I was at another store that had a SM. As far as running the store, I did run payroll, but of course I did not include the extra hours I put in as our DM won't have it regardless of the situation.

Perky ASM

Take it on...time worked = time paid.


this guy is so full of himself!


What a joke. Sounds like he needs a good dose of Turbo Lax.


"I sign every note, so they know that it's authentic. We have to do these things so that in the U.K., Maxine [to whom the letter on top is addressed] says, "Hey, this still is a small company."

1. 99.9% of partners polled say we would rather you spent time with your family than on a pseudo-personal note!

2. SBUX is not a small company and though the exec's can get their message across to all employees,
no regular employee has the same access to one, much less all exec's.
"Mutuality"...that's a defining characteristic of small & close...


"not in a company that's connected to its partners like we are."

It sounds good, but I wonder about the watchful and responsible care of employees when stores are operating at the bare minumum and the many store operations and customer needs are met by the couple or few. Working at Starbucks kind of reminds me of being a mother & homemaker - not enough hands-on support, which women richly deserve. (I'm not being sexist, it's juts that I hear that Starbucks employees a larger percentage of females)


I believe that Starbucks should work towards more "collegiality" in the adminstration of the company which would be in line with the idea of having "partners" working for the Company. Granted as partners we receive many benefits and even receive stock options and therefore partake in the Company's profitability. However, in the idea of "collegiality" we work towards a more democratic method of decision making. If the DM's says one thing but the partners of the district believe otherwise, then perhaps, there voices are louder. Also, perhaps, the promotion of people within the Company should be done through a decision of the partners. Also, the DM's should be voted into office on a two year basis and then return to the stores. I know that to be promoted to a store manager you have to be reviewed by other DM's. However, they are not reviewed by the people below them. How often do the DM's work with the people they are interviewing? The partners in the store know what type of person they are because they have to spend 8 hours a day with them. Vox parium, vox Sirenae.



Yer kidding right? Starbucks is still a bussiness, and the last thing any bussiness needs a bunch of pretentious whiny baristas making decisions.

Andrew Rosenstein

Somebody take away this guy's shoelaces.

LMAO...can you say "Non-Coverage?"


BSR you aren't joining the wobblies are you?


No sorry. I don't believe that a union would be effective at Starbucks for many reasons. And also, if you notice my suggestions for the reorganization and administration for Starbucks is nothing like the demands from the movement to unionize Starbucks.
For example, I believe that if a store manager is incompetent, then the store partners should be able to have a vote of "no-confidence" against their store manager. Wouldn't that make alot of sense? After all the DM, comes in once a month to checkup on the store and let me tell you, those eight hours are perfect for a little "song and dance" because the baristas might have to put with the shit from a derelict store manager for the rest of the time. However, if Starbucks management was also held accountable to the partners, then perhaps it would be a great workplace. Collegiality is necessary.



Maybe they could spread his ashes in the coffee and we could call it CEO Blend! Talk about being burnt.


I've met Jim Donald. He's actually a really nice guy and talked to me for an extended period of time. I was quite surprised. don't think I want to be his wife though.



Every comments I read from you, is nothing but bitterness. If you are that dissatisfied, why the f*** do you still work for the company. If you think you got much more to offer, then find another job. You got the option to leave. You are the type of people that bring other people down. Stop crying. Get over yourself.


I know of one store where the partners hated the SM so badly that they called the DM and asked to have a meeting with him. They told him of this SM's behavior and how he continued to leave early, did not ever work the floor,scheduled partners under 20 hours, etc. Well after so many stated these things the DM terminated the store manager, so there is strength in numbers, if you are really unhappy with your SM for all good reasons, take it to your DM.


Actually BSR, what you suggest is exactly what the wobblies want to do. They even want managers to be chosen by employee vote.


Big girls don't cry. We make a difference. And thats what I do everyday. I equalize out the world and bring it justice!




I read this article in the Seattle Times the day after I spoke with a women who is the manager of the human resources department in the seattle office. I have been a SBUX partner for over ten years, and she told me if I would quit they could pay someone a lot less to do my job. I wonder if Mr. Jim Donald knows that his front line partners are being treated with such disrespect and disregard for our feelings. Last time I checked it was in our mission statement to treat eachother with respect and dignity. I suppose that only applies to those of us on the front lines. When I brought that part of our mission statement up to the women in human resources, she was quick to reply that I should care most about the fiscal responsibility of SBUX and happily make my pittly little paycheck or leave. I am working on it.

is it considered disrespect to tell you the truth?
obviously the story is missing the bulk of it so i'm not disagreeing that they treated you poorly, but the reality is that if you did quit they would hire someone who would be paid less. they may not be as good, or know anything about the company - but it is truthful that they'd be paid less.

sometimes it's refreshing to see someone in PR who actually tells the truth, and says it like it is...
even if it hurts your feelings.

respect isn't not hurting people's feelings. otherwise no one would ever get written up, coached or fired. respect is being honest.

so without knowing more - the mission statement seems to be held just fine by the details you've given.



You get what you pay for. I would love some details from you about your experience with SBUX.


The truth is, everyone could get paid less to do the job they do. Partners overseas get paid a lot less to do our job. I wonder if that has anything to do with the huge growth in the Asia pacific region of SBUX?? Pay less over seas, make more profit. Howard is a smart businessman no doubt. I wonder if you would be happy making less than you do. At your next evaluation you should ask for less money, since you are so supportive of the position human resources has taken. I can give you the name and number of the person I spoke to, and you can call and have them give you a decrease in pay. You sound like a great "partner"


If i go i want to be paid and i want free travel, free motel stay, beacuse starbucks don't pay enought to take road trips!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I'm just surprised that you aren't embarassed to admit working at a freakin' Starbucks for ten years. LOL

Michael Brophy

Jim Donald was the Safeway Eastern Division Manager when I was an Assistant Store Manager in the Washington, DC area in the mid 1990's. He's a top notch, down to earth guy and I'd work for any company he's running.

Every morning he'd leave a voicemail for all of the Assistant Store Managers, a daily pep talk of sorts. He's authentic and knows how to keep retailing simple. He knew the grocery specialty departments like no one else (anyone in grocery will tell you the perimeter specialty depts are where all the margin is). In many ways, Starbucks is like one big specialty store -- no doubt he knows how to capitalize on its potential.

Jim raised gross margins for Safeway's Eastern Division through grass roots intervention with each manager and empowered each store management team to merchandise itself to its unique clientèle (retail grocery operates on notoriously razor-thin margins).

I've never met a more charismatic leader. Starbuck's is fortunate to have him at the helm.


Does anyone have the email address for the CEO? I would like to drop him a line.

David D'Amore

Starbucks employees are some of the worst that I have ever encountered. I am talking worldwide--- from Honolulu, San Francisco, Miami, NYC to London. I have found nicer people working at Burger King.

I always get this feeling that Starbucks employees could go "postal" at any moment. I mean it! Seriously. Say the wrong thing or make a joke and you might be retaliated against in a verbal assault or gunned down. God forbid you should decline to give them your name--- so they can scream it at the top of their lungs over the crowd--- who has no business knowing it anyway.

In the end I feel sorry for this corporate culture of psychotic nerds and drama queens who spend all day steaming milk and making espresso, as well as coming up with way to violate my personal life.

Thank you for your attention.


In the end I feel sorry for this corporate culture of psychotic nerds and drama queens who spend all day steaming milk and making espresso, as well as coming up with way to violate my personal life.

In the end we all feel sorry for you as well. To be that paranoid is sad. No, baristas will not "gun you down" as you put it. I'm thinking you are more the drama queen here. Asking someone their name is by no means a violation of their personal life. A bit dramatic, don't ya think???


I don't think there will baristas at Jim Donald's funeral.

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