I bought a coffee from Starbucks the other day and was impacted by what was written on the cup. I am not generally one to spend deep moments pondering fortune cookie’s or coffee cup insights. It was a fluke that I even saw it. When I picked it up the sleeve fell off and I noticed that the writing on the wall wasn’t one of those motivational poems or schmaltzy quotes that I have become accustomed to tuning out. This was different. They were talking about me. That cut through the clutter and got my attention.
Here is what it said:
HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL FOR 10 YEARS.
Now, as I read that I immediately thought, “No, I haven’t… I must have been given the wrong cup. There is probably a seasoned conservation activist somewhere who is gonna be so mad when he finds out I have his drink.” But then I noticed what was written immediately below…
Everything we do, you do. Buy our coffee and good things happen. Take Starbucks 10-year partnership with CI in making things better for farmers and the planet…It makes a difference. Just like you do. Congratulations, you.
Brilliant. I have been buying coffee from them for over ten years and what this cup was saying is that I am not just a customer, I’m a partner in the mission that they are on. I have never personally met a single coffee bean farmer but I am making a difference, because me and the mermaid are on the same team. I gotta admit, it felt pretty darn good.
As I sat there sipping my coffee and congratulating myself on all the great things I was accomplishing around the world by doing so, I thought of a conversation that I had the night before. I had bumped into someone around town who goes to freshlife. After we met, he shook my hand and told me, “you guys are doing a great job,” and then he went on for a bit about all the great things that me and my team were doing for the Lord, and how he prays for us and how pumped he is to be here. I listened until he was done and then congratulated him right back. He looked a bit surprised by that. But he had just told me that he prays and that he serves, I reminded him of this. I asked if he gives to the church as well and he said that he does. I shook his hand once more and then rephrased the compliment he had given me just moments ago, telling him, “We’re doing a great job!”
I want those who are a part of freshlife to understand what Starbucks knows to convey. Everything we do, they do. As we stand as one behind the God-given vision we are pursuing; we are partners together in all that we accomplish. No matter what your role is on the team, you are a part of the uprising. Congratulations, you.
One of a leader’s most important responsibilities is to continually foster this sense of unity and ownership in their organizational culture.