Starbucks Chief Executive Officer Howard Schultz took to the Internet to announce an online grassroots campaign by having his DC Starbucks employees write “Come Together” on the cups of all of their customers to send a message to lawmakers about the fiscal cliff. While Internet grassroots efforts are not typically led by wealthy corporate CEOs, Schultz has instructed the baristas to write the message on the cup of each customer all this week, through December 28th.
In an online statement on December 26th, 2012, Schultz explained:
“Rather than be bystanders, we have an opportunity—and I believe a responsibility—to use our company’s scale for good by sending a respectful and optimistic message to our elected officials to come together and reach common ground on this important issue. This week through December 28, partners in our Washington D.C. area stores are writing “Come Together” on customers’ cups.”
This is the first time that Starbucks has ever asked its employees, referred to as “partners” by the company, to write anything other than names and drink orders on the cups of their customers. It is not, however, the first time that Schultz has gotten involved in efforts to manage the nations debt, with his encouraging business leaders to withhold contributions to U.S. political campaigns last year, asking them to hold out until a debt solution was reached by lawmakers.
Says Schultz, “My hope is that this simple message will serve as a holiday reminder from Starbucks of the spirit that has always bridged differences and that we all have the power to come together and make a difference during every season of the year.”