For my ethnography project, I decided to observe the Starbucks on Rockside Road in Independence, Ohio. My plan was to observe the subculture of Starbucks’ customers. A subculture is defined as a “structured social inequality or, more specifically, systematic inequalities between groups of people that arise as intended or unintended consequences of social processes and relationships.” My question was twofold. Does Starbucks appeal to certain social statuses? And if so, does Starbucks serve as another example of social inequality?
Starbucks Corporation, generally known, as Starbucks Coffee is the leading retailer and a brand of world’s forte coffee in the world, with more than 15,000 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim, wherever in this world where premium quality coffee is in demand. Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world ahead of UK rival Costa Coffee, with 20737 stores in 63 countries and territories, including 11910 in the United States, 1496 in China, 1442 in Canada, 1052 in Japan and 772 in the United Kingdom. The first Starbucks was open in 1970. The name was inspired from Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, a definitive American novel regarding the 19th century whaling industry. The nautical name matches seamlessly for a store that imports the world’s finest coffees to the cold thirsty people of Seattle. In May 1998, Starbucks have finally successfully entered the European market through its acquirement of 65 Coffee Company stores initially originated from Seattle in the UK. Both companies shared a common culture, focusing on a great commitment to customized coffee, similar company values and a mutual respect.
1. In the beginning, how was Starbucks different from other coffee options for coffee drinkers in the United States? What activities and assets did Starbucks leverage to differentiate itself from competitors?
World views do not arise from a lot of propositions, but rather emerge like a narrative. “That makes us individuality and provides a theoretical account for our convictions which serve as the foundation for our ethics and values”. (Wilkens, S. and M. Sanford 2009)
Starbucks is one if not the largest growing coffee shops in America. It has started a war on coffee. Starbucks has taken its franchise and expanded all over the world and really placing a Starbucks in just about every corner. It went back to its hometown and opened up a café. It happened right after Dunkin Donuts which was an England franchise and began advancing west and it now in three locations in Southern California. Dunkin Donuts opened up its store on Santa Monica boulevard in Los Angeles there was a mass of people lined up outside. McDonald’s, Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks have been fighting for the position for serval years and the battle is escalating fast.
Study shows that U.S. per capita coffee consumption has not really varied in over 15 years. Although the consumer has since evolved from regular brewed coffee to a more sophisticated gourmet brew, the overall intake for coffee has relatively remained the same based on the Gallup polls. (Brown, 2015) The Starbucks Company has managed to change the pallet of the consumer by the type of coffee they distribute. Companies like Dairy Queen, McDonalds, and Dunkin Donuts have had a complete coffee menu makeover in hopes to keep pace and their customer base. (Cowan, 2014) (Company Profile, 2015) Since 2003 there has been a noted growth of coffee import to the United States (U.S.), regions such as New York, Miami, New Orleans, Houston, and San Francisco have become major ports on handling imported coffee. The United States have increased their secondary countries in Latin and Central America in order to meet the demands of coffee beans here in the U.S. (Plume, 2003)
With an increase of Arabica prices after the Brazilian frost in 1997, roasting companies experimented with steam cleaning techniques to hide any bitter flavoring of Robusta when mixing with Arabica. These roasters were also educating themselves on how to use lower quality grades of coffee mixes; thus providing use for previously discarded beans to be sold to roasters who demanded a lower quality beans.
Imaging if there was no more coffee in this world, how would you feel? Nowadays, coffee becomes an important part of people’s life. People who often work overtime, they drink coffee because caffeine can make you awake; people who have to wake up early in the morning, they drink coffee because instead of making breakfast, coffee is more convenient; people drink coffee during the free time, because it also tastes good.
Figure 2 shown above shows a “hang-loose” Starbucks restaurant. In the picture above are two ladies relaxing at the restaurant. It doesn’t seem very busy. In the upper half of the picture near the center is the Starbucks logo. The purpose of this
Starbucks’ lead in the specialty coffee industry exemplifies the result of deftly executing a well-planned business strategy. Moreover, Starbucks is well positioned for what is expected to be a continuing rise in the popularity of specialty coffee products. The question before Starbucks’ leadership, however, is what avenues will lead to Starbucks’ goal of remaining true to its core, the highest quality coffee products while providing a “total coffee experience” for its customers?
The larger known coffee businesses were beginning to show signs of stagnation in the 1970’s and 1980’s. Unlike Proctor & Gamble other large manufacturers, specialty coffee producers were small independent distributors. According to the Harvard Business School report on Howard Schultz; During the early 1980’s the average American consumed less than two cups of coffee per day, with almost one of every two men , women and children over the age of 10 does not drink coffee at all. The large coffee business started to compete for market share in a shrinking market. The smaller independent specialty coffee producers were selling only high quality Arabica beans. Arabica beans have less caffeine, less
Coming up with development goals to, facilitate growth. Growth is an important aspect that determines the progress of an organization and how completive it should be.
In terms of competition and the forces, which could limit the success of Starbucks it is important they stay ahead or even with other companies concerning innovative products. Many more micro companies are coming up with new products with a similar quality and a lower price/cost. It is important that Starbucks continues to search for innovative products to continually satisfy their customers. At the same time “rivalry” amongst Starbucks and smaller providers of coffee will continue to increase as the demand for coffee continues. The buyers bargaining power is significant as they can determine the cost, type of product, quantity and ultimately