2013-10-11

Kick-off!

Well, today we actually started charging customers. Not bad. 11am-8pm, officially, but we stayed later as most people in this company are social dawdlers. I had dinner with a girl who's been dropping in, and also managed to close up the shop after almost figuring out the "heart" latte-kata. Then there was this insane (no seriously, the alternatives are just seriously boring) job-ad I put up on our page.
[PROJECT] at [ADDRESS] is hiring "baristas". Prior experience is NOT required. Feel free to drop-in for an informal chat.

Should you join the team at [PROJECT], you will have access to good equipment (pressure-profiled individualised pump+boiler espresso machine, conical burr grinders, Sproline Vortex+Foam Knife, superb water filters, temperature-on-demand boiler...), unfettered access to in-house knowledge-base, (currently) unlimited latte-art practice ingredients, a fast-track to Malaysian coffee industry networks, mentoring in multiple aspects of the coffee business, opportunities to move up the supply-chain into roasting and direct trade, etc. etc. etc. as our business grows. Do not view this as a dead-end job.

We look forward to meeting you!

* * * * * *

Our REQUIREMENTS, in descending order of priority:

1. You feel that cooperating with other people is more important than changing their opinion/s. (COMPULSORY!)

2. You are interested in a data-driven approach to creating "good" coffee. (You like being "systematic".)

3. You're familiar with the "third-wave" coffee movement, its culture, stories, technology, and stories. (Do some homework.)

4. Your acceptable salary range in Kuala Lumpur, for an 8 hour x 6 day week (manual labour) is RM 900 - RM 2,500 per month.

If you think you can deliver our requirements, then begin by emailing your resume to [EMAIL]. You can expect up to three interviews, by phone or on-site. At on-site interviews, your ability to brew coffee using espresso and pour-over methods may be tested. You may also be tested on your approach to customer service, and your knowledge of Malaysian law regarding the operation of food and beverage retail businesses.
This eventually led to interesting comments about the lowness of pay. Some of my comments:
you don't need to be educated to know what "data-driven" means - you just need to be born smart enough to have figure out what "data-driven" means by whatever age it is that your eyes met the post.

RM900 is minimum wage in Malaysia - which isn't even enforced, so people often get less than that.

Too bad about salaries in Malaysia isn't it? I refuse to be a salary snob, and it costs me a lot of relationships - simply makes it impossible to date women who prefer to spend more, for example. I've lived in Malaysia for 25 years, and I still think it's a pretty crap country, with a pretty crap economy, but that doesn't stop me from getting on with life...

//

it's a matter of expectations isn't it? First of all, I do like to underscore that I'm not passionate about coffee at all - coffee could drop off the face of this planet tomorrow and I wouldn't give it a second thought. I just make sure that I deliver what my job entails, whatever my job happens to be at any point in time. Maybe I'm just passionate about definitions.

As for figuring out "under" or "over" payment - I guess that's what the free market is for! My client can see all these conversations, and based on the feedback that they receive over the next few weeks, I'm sure they'll be able to calibrate their expectations.

I have zero expectations. I like to wait and see what happens. That, is science, to me.

//

I personally don't expect any responses. (Neither do I expect an absence of responses.) But the requirements describe the requirements outlined by the client - whether those are rational or not is beyond my concern - since I am not (edited:) responsible for most decisions around here.

//

we had a chat about the comments that certain people (SICSICSIC :P) put on our post - we figure that there's a certain target market that'll take to third-wave coffee in the future. I personally think that the client'd prefer folks who can tahan long-form reading, but don't really know much about coffee yet...

... simply because it's quite likely that our target audience is fairly well-heeled, or well-traveled, or well-read... so our baristas will need to be conversant with that crowd...
Existential crisis? We're just bored. Screw crisis, buat kopi je...

2013-10-08

"Passion" and Implementation

Passion is useful to a few types of people
(a) people who love things
(b) people who who need to admire (a)
(c) people who need to market to (b), by deploying (a).
The construction of a pipeline that delivers (a), and then (b), to (c), is what good business people do. I suppose.
Tour of Duty. Month 9. 120 hours on the job, then back home, an hour of grooming, and two hours of laundry. It'll be over soon. Whee.