My name is Pawel Murawski I work in Prufrock Coffee based in London… My friedns call me Pav, so let’s stay with this one. I have been working with coffee for quite long time (About 6 years?) especially because I am just 23 years old… In this blog, I will try to showcase the baristas point of view, and help You guys answer some questions…
For starters, busy day in Your cafe.
As we can all agree, We love making coffee, simple process of mixing espresso with milk and pleasing customers with it is something we wake up every day for. But there is more…
It is very trendy to talk about customer service, the way You talk to people, behave, dress, smile, etc. Everyone now will tell You ,,my cafe is unique for its personal way of treating customers” You will hear ,, We don’t have customers, we have guests”. Well… How does the barista feel at that moment?
There we are, standing all sweaty, hungry, thirsty, upset after all those soy, decaf mochafuc##nchicoccinos, looking at the watch with hope that break is close, we just finished 200 flat whites ,,to go” run, and… Your boss comes in and tells You that You don’t smile enough…
Baristas job changed since I started to be one… Now I have to interact more, now I have to talk whlie I am steaming the milk, now I have to be extra fast but extra careful, watching scales but keeping the eye contact, hard isn’t it? But hold on… If it is so hard, and We are… SPECIALTY COFFEE (church piano style melody in background), we are unique and luxury, we have to earn more right. HA! Not really…
I have been struggling with that issue, until I have realised…
Do You my coffee loving friends have any idea how important You are? What is a role of Barista? Not to screw something that is amazing. You can’t make Your coffee better then it arrived from the farm, If fermentation was too long, You can’t do anything bout that, If roaster had a cigarette for 30 seconds too long and burnt some beans to much You won’t change it. You, my friends are dealing with product that is ready. This means, ALL those eyes are on You! Farmers, green buyers, roasters, delivery guy from FedEx have done their jobs well, just so You, as a last piece of that chain could turn it into ,,coffee to go”. Sounds a bit amazing, doesn’t it?
I often hear from other baristas simple sentence ,, Why should I care, I am not in charge, I can’t change anything”. My answer is always the same. You Are! You are in charge of Your own standards, Your own quality. Make it, create your standards, what is a shot You won’t serve? What is latte art You won’t serve? What is the time of one latte from getting a docket till saying ,,have a good day”?
Score them, numbers, use them, baristas calculate. Use maths, put Your standards into maths.
Challenge yourselfs, every monday 5% better. Just 5 % a week. Be fair, work hard, progress. Find Your weak point, and kill it. Be the best, feel the best.
It is still going to be hard, still improving puts more pressure on You. You have extra qualities joining your daily routine, You will work more, harder, You will be more tired, but You know what?
I LOVE IT! I wake up every day thinking that there is a family in El Salwador, working their asses off to deliver, That Aida will take care of sorting and processing. My favourite rostery is probably now finished amazing, whole night work. Now is my turn, I am in charge, I am the one doing things, I will make a change, I will make my customers feel happy, I will change their terrible morning into something pleasant. What if You don’t feel like that?
Quit, I am serious, don’t lie to yourself, find something that You want to do, don’t treat coffee as a 8hours to do thing, it is to serious… We need you, but please, do not turn all this work into something bad…
As it is my first blog, I am really looking forward to hear What You want to read about! For sure I will post some interviews with some industry stars, maybe some shots and videos from Prufrock.
Let me know what You want to see: