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United Baristas Audio Articles

Progressing from barista to manager

In the latest United Baristas managing people and building teams newsletter we look at the skills required to help the people on your team progress from the shop floor to taking on management responsibility – whether that's better managing themselves on the job, or beginning to manage their colleagues, a project or even a business unit.

These four steps are based on Zarvana's Critical Thinking Roadmap

If you found these tips useful, make sure you subscribe to our managing people and building teams newsletter. Every other month you'll get a tip specifically for coffee people whose job it is to manage other coffee people.

Finally, we'll be exploring topics like this at Total Coffee 2023, a new talks programme at Caffè Culture curated by United Baristas. Find out more and get your free ticket at



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  • Scaling Specialty – Part 3: Small is beautiful, but can big be better?

    In the final article of this mini-series we share reflections from people that have scaled specialty coffee chains, plus add some ideas of our own.View the full mini-series at
  • Scaling Specialty – Part 2: The profitability chasm

    The profitability chasm starts when headquarters’ costs become greater than the profit generated by the shops. Many operators experience the edge of the chasm at three or four sites.This audio article is part of a mini-series exploring why specialty coffee chains fail. View the fill series:
  • Scaling Specialty – Part 1: Are specialty chains too big to succeed?

    In a new mini-series exploring why specialty chains keep failing, we start by identifying the hurdles that must be surmounted when expanding from one shop to two.View the full mini-series at
  •  Green coffee carbon calculators are wildly inaccurate

    Science, industry research and carbon calculators agree that coffee production is a key cause of coffee’s carbon footprint. However, the carbon footprint of green coffee production varies depending on the specific farming and production methods. Some studies calculate emissions to be as low as 0.5 Kg per kilogram of green coffee at milling. Other researchers estimate the carbon footprint of green coffee to be as high as 12 Kg per kilogram.With such a large range, how can coffee businesses identify an accurate figure to estimate their carbon footprint? This article explains that there is currently no good way to pick a figure. Plus, the carbon models require updating, so any figure you choose is likely to be wrong. At present the uncertainty is so great that, for most coffee businesses, calculating your green's carbon footprint is a fool’s errand. There are, however, a number of workarounds. We explain where the science is at, what scientists are current doing to improve the accuracy of carbon calculators and how you can start cutting your carbon footprint now. This article was originally published on United Baristas. You can read the full article and view the references at how are you cutting your coffee's footprint? There's many things you can do from crop to cup. Feel free to drop us a line and tell us what you're doing, United Baristas is on all the usual channels.
  • Introducing Total Coffee

    Today we announce the first sessions of our new talks programme, Total Coffee. We’re bringing together a range of practitioners, experts and industry leaders to empower coffee people.Join us at any of the dozen sessions taking place at Cafè Culture this October for powerful insights plus actionable ideas.You can find out more about Total Coffee and register:• • caffecultureshow.comWe look forward to seeing you at Total Coffee. 
  • How to have a fight 🤜 🤛

    When workplace disagreements arise, it's tempting to smooth things over or rush to compromise. But strong opinions – when harnessed – can lead to better decision-making. Plus, disagreements are a sign that people care.This audio article is from our latest Managing People & Building Teams newsletter, especially for coffee people who manage other coffee people. Subscribe and get a tip every other month at
  • Culture Counts: don't outsource your company culture

    In the first managing people and building teams for 2023, we explore how company culture is a practical tool that explains what gets prioritised, how things get done and what the rewards and penalties are.Many owners and managers have attempted to delegate the creation and maintenance of their company culture to shop managers or HR. We explain why this approach isn't working – and what you can do about it.Subscribers get more information and resources to help them build their company culture in 2023. Subscribe at
  • Offsetting is for wimps

    You can offset a tonne of carbon dioxide more easily than buying a bag of coffee. Offsetting websites are online shops, it costs just £9 to offset a tonne of CO2e. In this episode we explore why offsetting is fraught with challenge and absolutely not a substitute for carbon reduction.You can read the original article, and view the relevant references, at