Office coffee has a dismal reputation for a reason. Far too often, the java served at work comes from a supermarket can, is made in a substandard automatic drip coffeemaker and sits on a warmer until it's bitter and undrinkable. No wonder the average U.S. worker spends about $1,100 a year on takeout coffee
to drink at work. Luckily, you're not doomed to drinking lousy coffee at work. Our two-part series will help you improve the quality of your office coffee in a few easy steps. In the first part, we'll focus on things you can do to introduce better coffee to the entire office.
Clean the Coffeemaker
You'll be amazed how much difference a good cleaning can make. A dirty coffeemaker carries a reminder of every pot of coffee ever made in it, only worse. Check out our earlier post about cleaning your coffee equipment
for tips. Once it's clean, set up a schedule to keep it clean.
Buy Better Coffee
Better coffee beans result in a better cup of coffee. It's Coffee Logic 101. It will help if you can hook the boss on the good stuff, or get the rest of the office used to drinking high quality specialty coffee. Chances are if you can up the coffee culture at the office, your co-workers will be willing to kick a few extra bucks into the coffee kitty to ensure a steady supply of excellent java.
Convince the Boss to Buy a Coffee Grinder
A good coffee grinder is an investment in productivity. There are tons of studies out there to support your contention that providing excellent coffee in-house will increase office productivity significantly. You can even do your own "study" to show how much work time is wasted making runs to the coffee shop. Hang on to the data. It will be helpful when you decide to:
Advocate for a Better Coffee Brewer
The better your brewer, the better your coffee will be. If your office pays for a coffee service, do some math to calculate just how quickly that new coffeemaker will pay for itself. Depending on the number of people who drink coffee in your office, the best choice could be a high-end auto drip coffeemaker like the Technivorm
or the Bonavita
, which are certified by the SCAA. If your office staff includes espresso drinkers, you might even consider one of the Gaggia superautomatic espresso machines
that allow you to make one cup at a time. Some include milk islands so you and your office mates can enjoy lattes and cappuccinos without running out to buy them.
Are you the only coffee drinker in the office -- or the only one that really cares about drinking quality coffee? If you're not up to improving the coffee appreciation quotient for the whole office, the next part of our series will look at ways to make excellent coffee at your desk (or in the break room) for yourself.
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