“I was a store manager at Starbucks for four years, and I had the pleasure of meeting a Karen. She came in and ordered a venti cappuccino. My assistant manager was at the bar with an experienced barista, and they were cranking out the beverages until this one. One return, okay, no problem. Two returns, okay, but there is no way this one is wrong. Three returns; at this point, she was calling the assistant and the barista stupid and untrained, so I stepped in and called her over to the other end of the counter so they could catch up with the drinks piling up.
I told her she should not speak to my staff like that, they were both experienced and were making the drink to Starbucks standard. Here, what the woman wanted was us to put shots in a cup, then proceed to skim the foam off of all of our milk pitchers (in the past, we had large milk pitchers that we would steam as we went, so there was always milk ready, now they steam milk per drink) to fill the cup the rest of the way.
‘Tiffany knows how to make my drink,’ she told me.
Tiffany had recently been fired for no-showing for work two times as a supervisor, delaying the store opening and costing us money and customer satisfaction.
Me: ‘If you want two shots and a cup of foam, you have to order it that way. A cappuccino is part foam and part liquid milk, which is why they made it the way they did, there is a standard recipe for cappuccinos.’
She continued to berate us for our service and her drink being wrong, so when she finally got out all that she needed to get out, I asked her to go elsewhere for her coffee, as clearly we were not able to serve her as she wanted. She was not expecting that response, clearly, she was accustomed to having her butt kissed, and I was not going to let my staff be treated like that. I don’t remember if she left in a huff, I was headed to call my district manager to let her know I threw someone out and asked them not to return. I got major kudos from the staff there and the customers who were within earshot for standing up to a bully and defending my staff, who I knew were in the right, and at no point were combative with her.
My district manager knew I had to be pushed to the edge to make a decision like that, and even had she not been ok with it, I had a lot of support to back me up.”