November 13, 2009
Starbucks' new release of Via has brought some of its employees unhappiness. According to BNET, it has been aggressively training its employees to sell the instant coffee product.
BusinessWeek is running a story on how Via sales pitches have gotten so intense that both baristas and customers are complaining.
Some comments from employees include:
“This is the most stressful promotion I have ever experienced, and I’ve been with the company for seven years,”
Another employee blogged that Starbucks baristas “were just told to place a Via 12-pack in the customer’s hand while asking if they would ‘like to add some Via to their order.’
This sort of aggressive pitching is not in line with how the baristas see themselves, which is as more like bartenders than salespeople. Nor is it likely to win over customers, who are expressing exasperation on their own blogs.