Two types of coffee shop owner/manager… which are you?

By | June 22, 2010

Recently I’ve been working with a lot of very successful operators…

Recently I’ve been talking to a lot of operators who are really struggling…

Today I realised that, WITHOUT EXCEPTION, these two groups thought entirely differently about one key factor…

They way they think about the customers in relation to the success or failure of their business.

  • The successful guys ALWAYS think about what they can be doing to change their business so that it works better for their customers.
  • The unsuccessful folk ALWAYS blame the customers for the problems they are having in their business.

I honestly can’t emphasise this enough. That is the big difference. In our most recent book this is something that we discuss at great length. The success or failure of your business is entirely dependent upon your ability to take total responsibility for that success.

If you find yourself complaining in any way about your customers you need to STOP and start thinking “Okay what can we do better to make people want to visit us?”

And then you need to think that thought every single day. Trust me – that is exactly what the very successful guys are doing, whether they consciously think it or not.

2 thoughts on “Two types of coffee shop owner/manager… which are you?

  1. Agnieszka Lojko

    Hi, I have to agree with this comment, unwillingly, but I have to. We opened Mystic Brew only eight months ago and had our, ambitious ideas of what we wanted the shop to be. Our ideas were modified in a very drastic way by the area we are in and what customers coming through the doors wanted. We had to go through some changes which were hard to swallow for us but at the end of the day it is the custmers who will come back to you only if they get what they want and like what they get. We now sell products we never thought we would but that is what our customers want from us so we had to sell these items to get salesin and get repeat business. Still very tough enviroment for new starters in this industry but we are hopeful we will succeed! Keep up good work cofffe boys and keep the good advice coming. Your book was very helpful when we started,
    Agnieszka & Cassius

  2. Prue

    Hi- have a headache that I want to share. My shop is next to a tattoo artist, a great customer and one o the nicest guys you could ever meet. His bookkeeper, gofer and PA is an older man- about 60- near my age, who is always unhappy about something. We call him Mr Grumpy. He is just that to me- he knows that I do not share the right wing homophobic racist views that he gathers daily from reading the Mail and the Sun, but he respects my Indie, Mirror, Guardian culture and we chat about the weather. When I am not there, he is often arrogant (for ages we thought he was the owner of the place next door)and rude to my staff who are much younger, but they do their best to tolerate him because he is a good customer and they all like his boss. Last week there were ‘riots’ nearby caused largely by the way the police chose to handle a difficult situation. But they too were in a difficult position. My staff mostly live in the area, and were caught up in events. Today Kev, lets call him Kev, came in and held forth about the scumbags involved to two customers who disagreed with his viewpoint, and to my young server who was, in his eyes, one of the scumbags. In the end my server refused to speak to him any more but served his coffee in silence. The shop next door in a very valued customer. Kev is not- but he works there and has done or many years. His boss knows he is not easy but keeps him out of respect or his abilities and compassion or his mental health problems. Kev himself is exceptionally tall, big, quite intimidating and a bit smelly. How best to handle this? Do I take it on directly with Kev, or do I ignore it on a least said soonest mended approach, or do I talk to his boss….all have merits. Any thoughts welcome

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