29 Questions: How to Train The Best Out of Your Barista

Updated: Dec 21, 2021

Baristas are to your cafes as beans are to your coffee.

They define the quality of your brand and service. Too often, it takes the perfect blend of training, confidence and talent to ensure a barista delivers consistently high quality coffee and good customer service. It goes without saying then that a fully fledged barista must be willing to learn the techniques along with a personality to boot that allows him to work capably under steaming pressure.

The list of things you need to train your baristas on is relatively long. But look no further! We at Bean & Barley have summed it up perfectly for you. Here are the questions you need to ask when training and evaluating your baristas:

On Drink Building

This is the primary essence of their service. Customers want their money’s worth and the drink is synonymous to your brand’s image. A quality drink isn’t something you can afford to compromise on.

  • How long does it take for your barista to prepare 10 drinks in succession? Are you looking at an average of 65 seconds or less? Or is it a more dismal 80 to 76 seconds?

  • Does the barista know when and how to adjust the grind settings and calibrate this to the intended brew ratio?

  • When a barista pulls a shot, how do you grade in terms of the target flavor profile, body, and temperature?

  • How is the barista’s skill on making hot drinks in terms of micro foam quality, proper vortex, temperature, and proper latte art fundamentals?

  • How is the barista’s skill on making iced drinks in terms of: temperature and coffee flavor?

  • How would you rate your barista’s knowledge on drink preparation?

  • Does your barista maintain beverage quality consistency?

On Customer Service

It takes more than just a warm greeting, a pretty smile and getting the name right to satisfy a customer who is in need of his or her daily dose of caffeine.

  • Does the barista have a sense of urgency when assisting customers?

  • Let’s talk about speed. Is the customer acknowledged within 10 seconds?

  • Does your barista display good demeanor by being friendly, outgoing and happy?

  • Does your barista make conversation with the customers?

  • Does the barista humbly acknowledge his mistakes and corrects them appropriately?

  • Is the barista well-informed of your menu and ongoing promotions?

  • Is the barista familiar with your regular customers and their favorite drinks?

  • Does the customer come first to this barista?

  • The most important question of all: does this barista give your customer a reason to return?