In times of change and development, and also in times of difficult circumstances such as recession, leadership and talent management skills are highly valued. In application to Starbucks it should be observed that in times of recession when consumers tend to cut back on luxuries such as coffee from coffee shops, Starbucks must strive to offer improved service to customers in order to retain them. The managers (and ideally leaders) of Starbucks must also continually strive to motivate Baristas to deliver exceptional service even when customers become more demanding. This concept is closely correlated with that change management and goal setting whereby engaging Baristas with the process can ensure that they feel empowered to respond to the challenge and that they have responsibility for it. At a local level this may mean running small promotions which would suit the customer demographic in order to attract and retain more customers. Furthermore, if Starbucks wish to retain their employees it is prudent to continue to invest in training and development in order to ensure that they are highly skilled and capable of responding rapidly to changes in customer demand. This might include job exchanges with Baristas from other retail outlets in order to share best practice, or creating a forum where Baristas can put forward their suggestions for improvement. Although these are relatively small steps they can help individual Baristas to progress within Starbucks and this ensures that Starbucks generates a reputation as an employer of choice which fosters home grown talent and treats employees with fairness and respect.Research into the prevailing management style at Starbucks reveals that they have a relatively flat hierarchy which ensures that it is easy to disseminate information widely and effectively within the organisation. Starbucks has a clear mission “to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighbourhood at a time” and this is fully evidenced in their training policies and ethos. The structure and leadership style of Starbucks also ensures that the business can be responsive to customer needs because the baristas are in direct contact with customers every single day and also have the necessary mechanisms to ensure that they can provide valid and timely feedback to their managers in order to improve the customer experience.