‘A historic moment’: U.S. store partners at Starbucks respond to raises, new investments


This week, Starbucks announced a series of new investments in partners including the return of Coffee Master training and black aprons, increased pay for U.S. store partners, a new Starbucks partner app, increased training time and more.  

The investments were inspired by partner feedback through surveys, internal channels like Workplace and the Partner Hub, as well as 30 collaboration sessions held with retail partners and Starbucks leaders over the last month, where partners shared ideas on what they wanted the next chapter of Starbucks to be. This is the start of a new partnership to create the company’s future together.

On Wednesday, Howard Schultz, Starbucks chief executive officer, and other leaders spoke to nearly 9,000 partners virtually and in person during an open forum to talk about the new investments and the path ahead.

Partners at the Starbucks Support Center and also online gathered to listen to Howard Schultz, Starbucks ceo, during an open forum on Wednesday. Joshua Trujillo

“Let’s bring back the moments that are joyful,” said Schultz. “Let’s remind people of who we are, who we have been, and who we will be again. And so, the investments we’re going to make in the company are historic.”

Here are highlights from how partners responded on social media and internal channels:

“So excited that we’re bringing back more coffee knowledge, coffee master, more training for our partners!!!!”

“Yes, Coffee Master! The heart and soul of Starbucks!”

“I love the investments that are being made, they are thought out. Especially the training/re-training. It’s imperative.”

“This is the Starbucks that hired me, and I remember. Thank you.”

“YES! I love when Howard comes back front and center, but he cannot do it forever. How do we ensure that we do not lose track again?”

“That training increase is huge!”       

“WOW, 40 hours of training!!, the investment is huge!

“We all make mistakes, it’s about LEARNING from them!! <3”

“Investing in partners = Investing in Customers = Investing in Shareholders”

“(This is) a historic moment in the history of Starbucks. I am so proud to be a 27-year partner.”

Watch video excerpts from the Starbucks partner open forum