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‘Very much a fan of just being able to do what I want’: Starbucks barista shares why she doesn’t want to get promoted

'Being a general manager is really hard.'


Luna Danielle


Posted on Mar 13, 2023

A TikTok content creator explained why she wouldn’t want to get promoted from her Starbucks barista position. 

The creator posted a now-deleted video replying to a comment that asked, “Have you thought about becoming a store manager or moving up?” the TikToker replied that she has thought about it—but not for very long.

“The average salary for a Starbucks store manager is around $70,000,” the creator said. “These people are working 50, 60, 70 hour weeks, at this point we’re quickly getting down to $19/hour which is about what I make in tips without all the added stress.”

The Daily Dot reached out to the creator via TikTok message.

According to Glassdoor, the estimated base pay of a Starbucks store manager is $54,996 but averages $75,290 with additional pay (e.g., bonuses, stocks, commission, profit sharing, or tips). 

The TikToker also shared that she wouldn’t want to be stuck in the sticky position of doing what upper management says and maintaining baristas’ best interests while trying to keep her set work hours. She explained in the comment section that shift leads can’t overlap more than 15 minutes or pick up barista shifts.

“I am very much a fan of just being able to do what I want while I’m there and leave but not have to think about it,” the TikToker said. “I fully support the people that are in those roles, they’re just not really for me. I’m a barista baby.”

Comments of self-identified current and former Starbucks employees seemed to relate.

“As a shift [lead]… I think about stepping down to a barista at least once a week,” one user commented.

“Being a general manager is really hard,” another said.

“SM [store manager] here, I always say our position does not pay enough for all the work they make us do,” a commenter shared. “I love my store and my team but it’s hard sometimes…”

The creator replied to a comment asking her opinion about assistant store managers and said that she thinks they have it the worst.

Glassdoor reports that the estimated base pay of a Starbucks assistant store manager is $48,043 but averages $64,190 with additional pay.

“You take on a lot of the work of a manager, most places it’s not a permanent position,” the creator said. “From what I’ve heard, if you don’t find a management position in a certain amount of time, you have to demote.”

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*First Published: Mar 13, 2023, 11:44 am CDT