Let’s Begin with a Simple Connection
I believe that change is the product of deliberate, incremental action. When we join together to shape a better world, sometimes our struggles will bear only modest fruits, other times they will trigger a social outpouring of courage and heart. We can never know beforehand what the consequences of our actions will be. We must believe that our individual actions are worthwhile.
Mountains brought me to the Pacific Northwest and the hope of shaping a better world brought me to Starbucks. I knew this place was different. I could feel the hopefulness and humility in everything.
My journey here began with classes describing the relationships we have with the people in coffee-producing countries who make our business possible. I was hooked. I became a sponge that couldn’t get enough of the stories from people who had their hands in the red earth floor, sticky with coffee cherry fruit.
Like all good students, I graduated to new experiences at Starbucks that further fueled my awareness of the challenges that face the planet and our role as a company to help improve things.
One experience stands out to me. It was on a trip to Costa Rica where I saw the value of partnership through the eyes of a coffee farmer. The farmers there talked about improved coffee quality and yields, but most of all they talked about the importance of the on-the-ground support they had from Starbucks. It was a mutual trust and respect that opened doors and made important changes to the way they cared for their coffee and the precious environment in which it is grown.
Today, as part of the Starbucks™ Shared Planet™ team, I spend my time working toward our company’s bold 2015 global responsibility goals. These goals are our compass – they are the disciplined measures we use to make daily progress toward real global issues. The goals are laser-focused on efforts like finding ways to reduce our environmental impact and build greener stores.
We are doing so much because there is so much to be done. We need to help each other. Individual actions are important – but organizing and joining together to act in concert is what brings about real change. Let us begin with a simple connection over a cup of coffee, discussing the important matters of the day and of the world.