Former Starbucks barista debunks the myth that certain locations have ‘worse’ service than others

A former Starbucks barista is going viral after explaining that it’s untrue that standalone locations have “better” service than ones embedded into other stores.

The post, from a popular TikToker named Ryan (@coffeefanatics), comes in response to another viral clip. In that video, a Starbucks customer asked why the chain’s locations inside department stores like Target are the “worst.”

Ryan, who claims to have worked at several Starbucks locations — including inside a Target and a Barnes & Noble — chimed in to clear things up. In the now viral clip, he explained why no version of the coffee chain is better or worse than others.

“Most Starbucks baristas will tell you that Target is not trained at the level that regular Starbucks is,” the TikToker said. “And that’s absolutely false.”

Ryan went on to claim that all Starbucks stores use the same training modules. On top of that, Target Starbucks employees have separate trainings geared toward Target-specific issues.

Additionally, Ryan said, all Target Starbucks employees have to “sign off” on new recipe cards, confirming they’ve learned the ingredients list and assuming full responsibility for any mix-ups.

The real difference, he claimed, isn’t the training. It’s the quality of management. Poor management, he pointed out, can affect any store’s productivity — regardless of location.

“That’s just retail, baby,” he said. “You never know what you’re gonna get.”

Ryan’s overall point was this: If your local Target Starbucks or Barnes & Noble Starbucks seems “worse” in some way, it’s likely due to management issues, or the same staffing woes that have plagued fast-food chains throughout the pandemic.

“It’s probably because they only have, like, one to two people on staff,” Ryan concluded.

Starbucks employees are a constant source of intrigue on TikTok. In recent months, baristas have earned millions of views by dishing on money-saving hacks, outlandish drink orders and the bizarre world of Starbucks cup “resellers.”

Baristas have also used the app to discuss the quality of their own work. Some have claimed that increasing customer demands — especially those for elaborate, viral drinks — have made their jobs much harder.

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