Starbucks: A business model for success now and in the future

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“Starbucks was named after Starbuck, first mate of the whaleship Pequod in Herman Melville’s Moby Dick…Starbuck was pluralized for ease of use” (Burks, 2009, p. 1). Now President, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer, Howard Schultz formed Starbucks Corporation in 1987 after purchasing the name Starbucks, six stores and a roasting plant from previous owners, Jerry Baldwin and Gordon Bowker (Burks, 2009). Starbucks operates under a successful value chain management strategy. Their value chain encompasses a systematic approach to the way business is done. Robbins and Coulter (2012) point out, “A good value chain involves a sequence of participants working together as a team, each adding some component of value” (p. 520). Starbucks continually reviews every aspect of their business; from the organizational culture to values and ethics to strategy, planning and operations, management control and finally human resources and performance management, searching for those items that don’t contribute to the “Starbucks experience” which is what makes the Starbucks Corporation a successful business model.

Organizational Culture

The Starbucks Corporation is built around an experience, the Starbucks experience. While the Starbucks experience is most notably associated with the way customers are treated, one could argue however, that the Starbucks experience transcends just the way customers are treated. The Starbucks experience is an all encompassing culture that revolves not just around customers but also to employees, or “partners” and suppliers. Burks (2009) notes that the company cares about the footprint it leaves, no matter where it does business; “the company is dedicated to making positive contributions to the communities where it doe...

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Koehn, N.F., Besharov, M.A., & Miller, K. (2008). Starbucks Coffee Company in the 21st Century. [Case study]. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing.

Overholt, A. (2007, December 29). Do You Heat What Starbucks Hears. Fast Company.com Retrieved from http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/84/starbucks_schultz.html

Robbins, S.P. & Coulter, M. (2012). Management (11th ed.). Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Starbucks Corporation. (n.d.). Our Company. Retrieved from http://www.starbucks.com/about-us/company-information

Starbucks Corporation. (2006, February 8). Starbucks Annual Meeting of Shareholders Starts over a Cup of Coffee; Company's Impact Now Extends Well Beyond Stores' Four Walls. [Financial release]. Retrieved from http://investor.starbucks.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=99518&p=irol-newsArticle_pf&ID=814454&highlight=

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