Top 8 Qualities to Look for When Hiring Cafe Staff

Running a coffee shop is tough. There is so much more to it than brewing and serving a perfect cup of coffee. Not only is it about providing great food and beverages, but also offering exceptional customer service to your clientele. For that reason, you will need a first-class hospitality barista to help you run the show.

To deal with the hustle and bustle of busy mornings and peak hours, your staff will help you balance out things. Even the smallest cafes need at least a few employees to run smoothly.

When hiring your staff, you will not only need to think about their duties and responsibilities. You will also need to consider your standards when it comes to customer service. A coffee shop with friendly, smiling, and hospitable staff and barista will help keep customers coming through the doors.


How to Find and Hire the Best Barista for Your Coffee Shop

Hiring the right staff is a key factor in operating a coffee shop. When looking to hire a barista, we recommend hiring for hospitality and customer service as the most important skill a person can have.

The truth is you can teach someone how to make a really good cup of coffee. And it much more difficult to train on soft skills like making welcome gestures and conversational prowess that will deliver a one-of-a-kind experience for the customers. We will talk about some of the unique qualities that might make a potential barista a great fit for your coffee shop.

Having the foundation skills for a barista are important. That being said, we are going to look at those foundational skills and attributes you need to have in a barista.

Here are the top 8 qualities to look for when hiring staff for your coffee shop.

  1. Personality

We all know that there is more to being a barista than just brewing coffee. Not even a World Barista Champion will become successful if they do not like talking to people.

Although personality does not dictate a person’s overall work performance, it still has its effects. If you are someone who does not enjoy meeting new people and doing all things at once, this job will more difficult and tiring for you. Stressful situations and long shifts will make it harder for you to display a positive attitude that is important for a barista.

A good barista will thrive off of any kind of social interaction. They know how to put customers at ease and make a coffee shop feel at home despite the long hours.

  1. Reliability

It is a solid requirement for baristas to show up to work on time and be professional, responsible employees. You can demonstrate reliability by simply showing up a few minutes early for the interview, wearing the appropriate attire, and bring all necessary documents. A great barista does not know any excuses. They just show up and make everyone’s day.

  1. Attention to Detail

Attention to detail is an important skill for a barista. It enables them to make fewer mistakes and improve the overall customer experience. For example, familiarise yourself with the patrons and memorise orders every day can make them feel valued. They are more likely to continue being regulars and put good word about the café to their friends and families.

Attention to detail also applies to the proper maintenance of coffee machines and equipment. A barista must know how to properly clean all parts of an espresso machine. You will also need this attention to detail when working and managing the cash register. This skill will set them apart from others.

A good barista is careful, focus, and works with a high level of accuracy.

  1. Ability to multitask, speed, and efficiency

It is a requirement for Baristas to do multiple things at once. They might be making multiple drinks while handling the cash register and answering queries. All of this can cause extreme stress, especially during peak and busy hours. They have to be able to work well under pressure. Baristas are expected to complete multiple duties at the same time.

In everything, they need to handle all coffee-related work efficiently.

  1. Excellent communication skills

Effective communication is a valuable skill for every job and working in a coffee shop is no exception. Baristas need to be able to communicate with the customers, both verbally and in writing. They need to communicate calmly and clearly, even under pressure.

Passing on wrong information will lead to wrong order placement and may result in a dissatisfied customer. It is not unusual for most customers to be in a rush (especially in the morning) when ordering their coffee. A barista must have the ability to pick up information from customer orders without confusion.

  1. Teamwork

Teamwork is important in a coffee shop team. Customer service is a team sport, and if the baristas and other staff do not work together, there will be an uphill battle in the workplace. During peak hours, all baristas must work together to fill orders. For that reason, teamwork is necessary to keep customers happy.

Teamwork is the key, especially in many coffee shops that use an assembly line organisation to keep the drinks moving. One person might handle the cash register and pass along the orders to another barista. One might make most of the drinks while others might take drive-thru orders. Another barista might be responsible for finishing the orders and give them out to customers. All of this requires excellent teamwork and cooperation.

  1. Salesmanship

A barista must be able to talk to customers about the café products and sell them. It is an important quality you should consider when hiring someone. See if they natural sellers and can capture the interest of customers.

  1. Knowledge and passion for coffee.

The perfect barista loves everything about coffee. Look for someone who wants to continuously learn, improve, and deliver 100% every day at work.

They must have passion for what they do. Coffee shop owners and managers are responsible for adding fuel to that passion. Doing that will set your baristas apart from other competitors. Remember, in the coffee business it takes more than pouring beautiful latte art. It involves everything from choosing the right beans, the brewing process until it reaches the customer.

A coffee shop may need a certain number of employees depending on its size and the range of its menu and services. If the goal is to have a self-run coffee shop, it is best to hire a barista to prepare and serve customer’s orders.

At the end of the day, the coffee shop industry is about creating a perfect cup of coffee and connecting with people. Therefore, it is important to employ the kind of staff who share your vision and help build the business towards something you dreamed of.