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    8 Replies Latest reply on Aug 21, 2008 8:54 PM by BRMcHenry

    Struggling Starbucks

    caffeinated Scout

      Read in the paper that Starbucks is closing 600 shops, which is like 12,000 jobs. Although its terrible that those people will be unemployed, but if they close the 2 shops that flank my establishment, I'll be very happy! Not likely, but competition is competition.

      Has anyone had to lay off an employee? How did you handle it? I can only assume that if the economy doesn't bouce back, we're going to hear more stories like this.
        • Re: Struggling Starbucks
          puzzleman Tracker
          The economy will bounce back. That always happens. What we are going through is a correction. Like Ronald Reagan said when the stock market was going down,"The market goes up. The market goes down. That is what the market does."

          The real question is how will you be positioned when it does come back? What happens is that comapnies get lean and then stay lean, so profits increase. That is good for the economy.

          Remember, when the going gets tough, the tough get going.

          • Re: Struggling Starbucks
            Archangel Adventurer
            There was a guy I heard about who owned a hot dog stand at Venice Beach. His business was thriving. He advertised in a local paper, had four employees and sold hot dogs, pretzels and cold drinks at a stead pace for ten to twelve hours a day, depending on the season. This guy was doing really well. Then, one day his nephew, a financial analyst of some kind, was visiting and told him there was an economic slow down starting and that he should cut back his hours, lay off at least one employee and cut back on the advertising to save money as he was going to make a lot less sales. "People don't want to spend money on hot dogs when the economy is bad." The guy followed his nephew's advice and laid off one of his employees, cut his ad budget in half, and closed promptly at 6PM every day.

            About a month later his nephew called to see how he was doing. The guy thanked him and explained to the nephew that he had been right. "I'm glad I did what you told me. Sales are way down since we last talked. I don't know what I would do now if I had to pay that extra person and all those ads, not to mention operating costs for staying open so late. I guess I dodged the bullet."

            • Re: Struggling Starbucks
              LUCKIEST Guide

              Struggling Starbucks Has anyone had to lay off an employee?? YES.

              The Lord spoke to Noah and said, "In six months
              I am going to make it rain until the whole world is covered with water and all
              the evil things are destroyed. But, I want to save a few good people and two of
              every living thing on the planet. I am ordering you to build an ark."

              And, in a flash of lightning, he delivered the
              specifications for the ark

              "OK," Noah said, trembling with fear and
              fumbling with the blueprints, "I'm your man.

              Six months passed, the sky began to cloud up,
              and the rain began to fall in torrents. The Lord looked down and saw Noah
              sitting in his yard, weeping, and there was no ark

              "Noah!" shouted the Lord, "Where is My ark?" A
              lightning bolt crashed into the ground right beside Noah

              "Lord, please forgive me!" begged Noah. "I did
              my best, but there were some big problems. First, I had to get a building permit
              for the ark's construction, but Your plans did not meet their code. So, I had to
              hire an engineer to redo the plans, only to get into a long argument with him
              about whether to include a sprinkler system

              My neighbors objected, claiming that I was
              violating zoning ordinances by building the ark in my front yard, so I had to
              get a variance from the city planning board

              Then, I had a big problem getting enough wood
              for the ark, because there was a ban on cutting trees to save the spotted owl. I
              tried to convince the environmentalists and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
              that I needed the wood to save the owls, but they wouldn't let me catch them, so
              no owls

              Next, I started gathering up the animals but
              got sued by an animal rights group that objected to me taking along only two of
              each kind. Just when the suit got dismissed, the EPA notified me that I couldn't
              complete the ark without filling out an environmental impact statement on Your
              proposed flood. They didn't take kindly to the idea that they had no
              jurisdiction over the Supreme Being.

              Then, the Corps of Engineers wanted a map of
              the proposed flood plan. I sent them a globe! Right now, I'm still trying to
              resolve a complaint with the Equal Opportunities Commission over how many
              minorities I'm supposed to hire

              The IRS has seized all my assets claiming that
              I am trying to leave the country, and I just got a notice from the state that I
              owe some kind of use tax. Really, I don't think I can finish the ark in less
              than five years.

              With that, the sky cleared, the sun began to
              shine, and a rainbow arched across the sky. Noah looked up and smiled. "You mean
              you are not going to destroy the world?" he asked hopefully

              "No," said the Lord. "The government already
              • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                coffee times Newbie
                hey its me coffeetimes no i have a partner and we are just hanging in there. there are a few places around us that have closed most of them are high end you know ?15 for lunch $25 for dinner one person we are struggling but we were first man standing out here have been here 3 years this fall and hope to be last man standing or at least one of them they are building a bbq rest. in our parking lot next to us a pretty famous one in our area hoping that will bring more traffic into our little end of town. i have been able to get myself in the local newspaper a few times in the past week for free advertising thats helped some but it is scarry out there. does cutting your hours back some really work?
                • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                  Interpreter Wayfarer

                  How did everything turn out? Did they close either of those two shops near you? Will you have to terminate any positions at your shop due to the economy?
                    • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                      BRMcHenry Adventurer
                      Being in the ice cream business we do 2x as much volume in the summer as we do the winter. Its getting towards the end of summer which was slower then I liked. I'm having to lay off several people right now. It is perhaps easier for me because I set it up when I hired them. I told them up front we are a seasonal business and that when the summer is over we'll likely scale back. The good thing is I can keep the best one's and have a good winter crew.

                      How to do it; be honest, be clear, do it in person
                        • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                          caffeinated Scout

                          Hi BRMcHenry,

                          Thanks for reading my post and welcome to the community! I can totally relate to the seasonality of the business. Iced coffees are a huge hit during the summer. Luckily I dont lose any sales come winter time. Customers simply convert to hot coffee.


                          Have you had the "talk" yet? Its a great thing that you let them know upfront that the job is seasonal. Do you usually hire students? That could be an easy solution than to laying someone off. Students have to go back to school so there wouldn't be a need to have the talk. Awkward moment avoided!

                          Are you a franchisee? I'd love to get your perspective on things if you are.

                            • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                              BRMcHenry Adventurer
                              Yes, I'm a Baskin Robbins franchisee, and no I haven't had the "talk" with the two students I have left to lay off, but they know. I've already laid off 3 in the past two weeks all of which were chosen to go because they would be the least effective in the winter months. Two more will go right after the next holiday, but in their case I'll ask if they'd like to remain on call.
                          • Re: Struggling Starbucks
                            caffeinated Scout


                            Sorry for the late response. Unfortunately Starbucks didn't close those two storefronts. I'm not going to lie, I did get my hopes up. Eh, what are you gonna do ya as usual. Still working at full force though. I have good people and I would do anything to keep them on.

                            Thanks for taking the time to respond to my post. How is your interpreting business going?