#77 Dutch Bros

Taylor Franz on Unsplash

Founded in 1992, Dutch Bros is a coffee chain started by two brothers that grew up working on a dairy farm. 

What started as pushcarts around town, is 300 locations strong in the Western United States today. 

When I moved to Oregon, it was no surprise that Dutch Bros is more than just a place to get your morning Java. It’s an institution of the highest magnitude, with a cult-like following that rivals the Church of England. 

During one of my morning rendezvous visits to this caffeinated shrine, I talked to the morning barista. 

She was a second-year sophomore at a community college.

I asked her, “What are you studying?” 

She said, and without hesitation, “General studies, but I will work at Dutch Bros as an Operations Manager once I am done this year.”

“What is it about Dutch Bros that excites you?” I asked. 

“The Founders and the company. Dutch Bros is more than just coffee. I’ve been instructed, that if someone is having a bad day, to give them a free coffee. They don’t measure their success by money, yet they make it.” 

This was incredibly powerful for me to hear. It made me think about why I come to Dutch Bros. 

Although the coffee seeps into your bloodstream faster than Usain Bolt and has the power to make you free solo the Effiel tower, the patrons at Dutch Bros are kind. 

The buck really stops there. 

Whether in business, or our personal lives, we will forget many things, but we will remember how someone or something made us feel. 

I take this philosophy everywhere I go. 

Whether it’s a phone call to a disappointed customer or interacting with the clerk who has a checkout line longer than the Nile, being kind, isn’t just nice. 

It’s acknowledging that we are human. We are connected.

It’s realizing that we are on this tiny planet, and trying to make it another day. 


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With Love,

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