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glenn

union revolution brewing at starbucks

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New York Magazine article

Okay, what's the real deal? Starbucks has often been cited as one of the best companies to work for. This article will have you believe otherwise.

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I've heard mixed reports from people who've worked for Starbucks - some negative and some positive. The description of a corporate environment in which only handful of staff are granted real full time hours is not unusual these days in the retail business (I consider Starbucks to be a retailer despite in some respects being a fast food purveyor). But the reason many mega-corporations implement the part time hours scenario is to avoid paying benefits - Starbucks grants full benefits to part time employees after only three months.

I'm not attacking or defending Starbucks but I think that, in general, retail food service workers face a serious uphill battle in the search for unionization. I spent many years in the retail (non-food) trade and with few exceptions it's a low pay scale industry in which benefits are scarce.

As for this comment

When Gross walked into the store for his first morning shift, he was dismayed—and encouraged—by what he saw. Just three workers were completely slammed with businesspeople for the A.M. rush. “In this kind of job,” he says, “you expect to work hard, but you don’t necessarily expect to go home feeling like you just ran a marathon.”

No disrespect intended but that sounds like a guy who has no clue what it's like to work in the food and beverage trade. It's fast paced hard work and you'll rarely feel as though you have enough people to handle the rush at peak times. Hustle is what it's about and if you can't take the heat get out of the fire. Starbucks is no exception - it's the nature of the business.

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