Stories

Stories

Each week we offer a wide-open, transparent look at what’s happening at Summit Coffee — from the news, to the celebrations, to the failures, and back again.

  • Mar202019

    On Awareness

    4 Comments

    Last week I was made aware of a Summit barista who was experiencing some self doubt because they (name and gender redacted, and irrelevant) had been confronted with my least-favorite customer question: Do you know what you’re doing next? This question, of course, implies that continuing to work for Summit Coffee (or any similar business for that matter) is not…

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  • Mar122019

    On Trust

    1 Comment

    This Sunday morning, Tyler and I will take our two kids on an airplane, and then another, spend a night at 30,000 feet and wake up in Rome. For the first time since owning Summit, I am leaving the country on a non-coffee trip. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it a vacation, since I will be plugged…

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  • Mar052019

    On Purpose

    No Comments

    About three years ago, though it’s hard to remember the month or really even the year, my father-in-law asked me if Summit had a “mission statement.” Sure, I said, and proceeded to wax poetic about the various things we did, and how we value relationships, people, etc. I was equal parts defensive, overwhelmed and scattered. “But do you have a…

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  • Feb262019

    On The Enneagram

    4 Comments

    It’s fair to say that I’m “in” on the Enneagram. A few months ago, I paid attention to conversations on the periphery. A few weeks ago, I chimed in with what I knew about personality types, particularly my own (all the Type 3s out there, raise your hand!). And now, I find myself instigating conversations on the Enneagram with anyone…

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  • Feb192019

    On (Small) Victories

    1 Comment

    I am extremely lucky that, because of my remarkably intelligent and high-performing staff, I have the space and objective to focus on the “big picture” for most hours of most days. Yesterday, for example, was a typical Monday and I spent time working on a Boston Marathon advertising experience (stay tuned), a mega cold brew expansion (stay tuned), a new…

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  • Feb122019

    On Failure

    13 Comments

    By Brian. It’s scary to fail. Little and big failures, short and long failures, public and private. Failing on any level is scary, and when you’re leading a group of people, failing hurts even more. I’m also encouraging a culture of curiosity, of taking (calculated) risks, of daring to be great and pursuing excellence in all things. And with great…

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  • Feb052019

    On The Extra Step

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    By Brian. Seven months ago, I told the story of being the first American to visit Querocoto, Peru, and more specifically the Rutas del Inca Cooperative. We have sourced from Rutas since our first season in roasting — the spring of 2015 — which coincided with their first harvest as a cooperative, and my trip last June was the step…

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  • Jan292019

    On Education

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    By Brian. Full transparency: I have made a commitment, to myself and to my staff, to write 52 blogs in 2019 — one for each week (obviously). So here’s blog 6, my last of January and 1 ahead of pace. In my opening story of 2019, I wrote about my intention on curiosity for this year. One of the readings…

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  • Jan212019

    On Journeys

    2 Comments

    By Brian. I love travel, and I love Summit, and thus have a particular affinity for spreading the Summit gospel wherever I go. I wear Summit shirts and Summit hats, bring Summit coffee and hand out stickers. And I bring the Summit flag. To Colombia and Peru and Guatemala, on coffee trips. To the Grand Canyon and Mt. Mitchell and…

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  • Jan142019

    On Breaking Through

    4 Comments

    By Brian There was a brief moment Sunday night when I lost it. Completely overcome by emotion, and completely surprised by that, I started to cry. In a room with 500 screaming coffee people (lots of jeans and boots and beards), I was standing in the very middle. There was pandemonium around me, a mix of deafening cheers and continuous…

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