Starbucks’ new CEO, Laxman Narasimhan, plans to work at one of the coffee chain’s stores for half a day every month. The CEO, who took the reins of the company earlier this week, stated in a letter to employees that he intends to remain connected to the culture and customers of the company, as well as its challenges and opportunities. He also expects his leadership team to ensure that the support centers are involved in discussions and improvements with the stores.
Narasimhan joined Starbucks last October and spent several months learning about the business, including undergoing 40 hours of barista training and wearing the green apron of the company’s baristas. Despite his new role as CEO, Narasimhan plans to continue working as a barista to stay connected to the company’s culture and customers.
The announcement comes at a difficult time for Starbucks, with over 190 of the company-owned locations voting to unionize as of Friday, citing concerns about working conditions, understaffing, and unreliable scheduling. The National Labor Relations Board has recorded the votes.