Schultz outlines Starbucks turnaround
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz brought talk of love to his recent appearance at the
Cable Center.“It’s a term not oten used in business: love. I came back to the company in January 2008because o my love and aection or the organization and the 200,000 people who wear itsuniorm,” Schultz began. “There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do to deend this company.”
Schultz’s appearance was part of the Daniels College of Business’ Voices of Experi
-ence lecture series. The series has brought many o the world’s top business leaders to
DU. Schultz also was promoting his new book, Onward: How Starbucks Fought For Its Life
Without Losing Its Soul.Schultz’s presentation ran down the salient events o his book: Ater serving as Starbucks
CEO since the early 1980s, Schultz stepped down in 2000. After several years, the company
was hurting in a way previously thought impossible. Wall Street and market analysts weresomewhat giddy: the invincible Starbucks was in a tailspin and seemed poised to lose its cli-entele to ast ood. Amid this nadir, which included brutal headlines, sinking stocks and a dirememo rom Schultz to Starbucks brass that was leaked, he re-took the reins in 2008.“Some people were cheering it, and a lot o people said they should shoot me or it,” he
told the audience. “People said, ‘They need a professional CEO to manage this company.’”
Schultz’s makeover o thecompany became one o themost dramatic corporate turn-arounds in memory. Starbucks’low point was partly attributed to an ailing economy. Schultz said the situation is largely unchangedand said companies have tolearn to operate independently rom larger economic issues.“I don’t think the economyis going to improve that much in the next year, i at all,” he said.
“Every company in America has
to create a values proposition,decide what they stand or.”Schultz didn’t mince wordsin making his case. Recentlyreturned rom a trip to Calior-nia, he mentioned the stark re-alities o state budgets.“States, at a ederal andlocal level, just won’t be able todo the things they’ve done in the past,” he said. “Corporations are going to have to do more or the communities they serve.”During a post-lecture interview, Schultz touched upon his well-known “impatient” man-agement style. Schultz didn’t exactly jump to dispute the perception.“When I sat down with the team trying to create instant coee or Starbucks, I asked them a very simple question: ‘How long will it take?’ They told me two-and-a-hal years, andI said the iPod was invented in a year and a hal, rom scratch.’ I said, ‘I want this in the marketin less than a year and a hal’… In less than a year and a hal, we were in the market.”
The crowd seemed pleased with Schultz’s candor. Oleysa Lowery graduated from DU
in June with an MBA. She came to see Schultz because she liked his social message.“I wanted to gain an understanding o how someone without any ormal business educa- tion can make a company that has such a ocus on the human part o it,” she said. “He shows that you can be successul ocusing on the human element.”
W a y n e A r m s t r o n g
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz visited the Cable Center as part o the Daniels College o Business’ Voices o Experience lecture series.
April showers bring deadlyrunoff, law students say
For more than a year, Drew Dutcher has lived in the shadow o what neighbors call “Shingle Mountain,”a pile o discarded roong shingles that may havecrossed the line rom eyesore to community healthmenace.Now, University o Denver Sturm College o Law students are demanding the north Denver shinglerecycling business Shingles 4 Recycling do somethingabout the 30-oot-high mountain o broken shingles they say is oozing potentially contaminated runo onto area streets and possibly into the Platte River.
Working under the guidance of DU Environ
-mental Law Clinic Director Michael Harris, student
lawyers Stephanie Fairbanks and Eric Wilson have
sent a 60-day notice o intent to sue to Shingles 4 Re-cycling on behal o area residents and environmentalactivists. I the company doesn’t cut the pile downand cover it, the students plan to le a lawsuit in ed-eral court under the Clean Water Act, Harris says.There are multiple shingle piles around the site,
but the largest is visible at the corner of East 51st
Avenue and Columbine Street. Harris says neighborsare concerned about runo rom the unsightly debris, which is uncovered and is threatening to spill pastdamaged containment ences.“Locals call it ‘Shingle Mountain,’ or obviousreasons,” Harris says. “What we see here o courseis, or community members, quite an eyesore. Butit’s also a potential re hazard and an environmentalhazard. There’s asbestos and other types o metalsand organics coming loose, getting into the air, andon a rainy day washing right o into the street hereand into the Platte River, which is just 1,100 yardsaway.”
Even if those materials don’t make it to the river
they pose a threat, Harris says. Chemicals and metalslet behind on the street are kicked up into the air bypassing vehicles and contaminate the area, he says.Dutcher says residents worry about possibleairborne and waterborne contaminants.
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