Rather than scowl at CEO Howard Schultz’s bold attempt to further the race dialogue, we should admire his tenacity and modern corporate leadership.
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock the past week, you probably have heard about Starbucks’s Race Together initiative. From the Washington Post‘s “Starbucks CEO has a terrible idea to fix race relations” to The Economist‘s “Starbucks and branding: #Fail” to Ad Week‘s “The Internet Is United in Despising Starbucks’ ‘Race Together’ Cup Campaign,” the media criticism has been fierce and unrelenting. A quick scan of social media doesn’t yield a much better response; the majority of comments are negative and downright cutting, declaring the campaign a major fail. Over the weekend, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said baristas would stop writing #RaceTogether on coffee cups.
Call me a contrarian, but I think the naysayers reacted too fast and have it all wrong.