Does the L-Word Belong in Business?

So I was standing in line at Starbucks, doing my usual coffee routine, and I saw one of the baristas, Carla, in the background taking orders for the drive-through. She’s talking on one of those hands-free headphone things, so I can only hear her side of the conversation:

“Is that you Barbara? How’s it going?”




“OK… Is that decaf? The usual?”


“Yeah, I know. That must have been great.”


“All right hon, that’s $4.50.″

The car drives up to the window, and I watch her conducting the transaction. As I walk over to the counter for milk, I hear Carla’s parting comment to the customer:

“Ok, see you soon. I love ya!”


You could practically hear the dubbed-in record scratch as I did an audible double-take. Did she really just tell that customer that she loves them?

This blatant profession of love in the midst of public enterprise made me cringe - and melt, all at once. Part of me, the Jesus-Spirit-Christian part, wanted to wave palm branches in her general direction for establishing a new pinnacle of customer service (Take that, Zappos!). But the buttoned-up business manager in me was tapping his foot, questioning the appropriateness of that exchange.

To read the rest of this post at The High Calling site, click here.

God, Paradox and the Science of Grace (Part 1)
Confessions of a Mad Journalist (Part 2): Overcoming the Fear of Failure
Confessions of a Mad Journalist (Part 1)
The Science of Grace (3)
About J.B. Wood
  • Susan DiMickele

    I want her to make my latte!

  • Sharon O

    .Interesting…and kind of cute.

  • Dan Black

    Cliff hanger, heading over their.