How to do barista training for your café


Each of your baristas will have different initial knowledge and skills to begin with, which will also lead to different lengths of training. Initial training should take no longer thanone month, but after two to three weeks, baristas should be independent.

If a month seems like a lot, it's important to note that there's no need to rush and it's better to discuss all topics thoroughly with baristas, as it will likely pay off in the quality of their work soon enough.


Setting criteria is the key to success. Why, you ask? If both you and the barista know what to do, how to do it, why to do it, everyone will work better right away. Agreeing on set expectations will allow your baristas to work within a clearly defined role, which will improve their effectiveness in their new position.

What barista training plan criteria should you set?

  • Set goals - Setting criteria would be pointless without setting goals, it is also important that everyone has the same goal, so set goals with new and existing baristas. Create a plan that will help you achieve those goals and that will allow your employees to succeed independently. Find out where your baristas stand with coffee and barista skills and set out where you need to move them and what needs to be clarified. Finally, establish a measurable outcome of success and talk about why the set goals were met or not.
  • Start Now - There's no need to wait, on day one, you can turn the conversation to what role your new barista will play in the smooth running of the operation. Having a clear list of expectations when it comes to responsibilities and workplace culture will lay the foundation for accountability in your coffee shop. Which might look like this, for example: what can a new barista bring to your café with their experience? How does the operation work, how do shifts work? What are our customers used to?
  • Hold employees accountable - Setting benchmarks at each point in time allows you as a manager to hold employees accountable to their goals and responsibilities. Create a checklist that baristas can use to hold each other accountable and then you can hold them accountable. What should a barista do at the end or handover of a shift. Check on the progress of new baristas.
  • Give meaningful feedback - Feedback should always be constructive, offer solutions and be aimed at building up the employee, not putting them down. Don't shy away from tough conversations, as this is what will help you build respect as a manager and show your employees that you are committed to their success as well. The ideal choice is to meet with the employee on a regular basis to discuss what could change, both on their part and yours, or conversely, what is going their way or yours.
  • Motivate - Find out what motivates each employee. Motivation isn't just about money. Are flexible working hours important to them or are benefits like entering barista competitions or taking a professional barista course that takes their barista skills that little bit further. For some baristas, even a visit to a coffee farm or roastery may be interesting. Take an individual approach to how the goals you set together will affect their career progression.
  • Keep your goals and criteria measurable - Clear criteria and goals lead to clear results.


While the preparation of coffee or any other beverage is extremely important, what is perhaps even more important is a friendly demeanor, professionalism, or one might even sayhospitality. The ability to provide genuine hospitality not only impresses your guests, but also plays an integral part in ensuring repeat visits to your café.

You might think that training a barista to be able to make a customer's visit a pleasant experience is impossible, or at the very least a long run, because it's something that has to be ingrained in a person, which is true on the one hand, but it's also something that can be worked on. Observing the three P'scan also be the key to successful preparation in this part .


Thefirst P is professionalism, which is the foundation of great customer service. Keeping a cool head even in the tougher moments is difficult, but it also shows a guest or perhaps a co-worker that there is a solution to their problem. We're all only human, yet the ability to not get swept up in the moment is very good and valuable.

The second P is patience, or patience in the original. It is a prerequisite for success in any service industry. Introduce your staff to the fact that flexibility in service policies is essential to creating a stable experience for each guest based on their needs and desires.

The last P is "people first", i.e. people or the customer first. Empathy for the guest will allow your baristas to connect with guests on a different, more intimate level. The barista's ability to recognise the mood of the customer gives him the advantage to tailor the service to each guest individually. Every barista is a bit of a psychologist at times.

Not only a satisfied customer is the key to the success of a café, but also a well-coordinated team. The well-being on the set has a great influence on the entire functioning of the café. Source: Joshua Rodriguez |


What do I mean by that? Some of these skills will be acquired by your baristas over time, others need to be literally taught. They're little things, but they're also very essential, and include everything from where to find things, to how to store products, to the complexity of working with the coffee machine in your cafe, to everything that sets your cafe apart from others, like making a unique coffee drink.


Every barista should have an understanding of the different types of coffee. That is, know where they come from, how they differ from each other and what is specific to the origin of the coffee and the different processing methods. It is equally important to be able to distinguish between different roasts and to know what makes the beans unique and how this affects the final taste of the coffee. Not to mention knowing the differences between coffee drinks.

Similar to how sommeliers have wine tastings, a good option for baristas is to hold a cupping, a tasting of a variety of coffee samples, during which you explain the unique characteristics of each coffee by origin or processing and allow new baristas to sample them. It's also a great way to reinforce that knowledge in their minds.

These days,it's also handy for baristas to have some knowledge of thebean's journey from the plantation to the cup, the roasting process, as well as information about thefarmer and the specific origin of the coffee, especially if the coffee you serve in your café comes from your roastery. Maybe not every customer needs this information, but at least the barista won't be caught off guard when a customer asks. Plus, if the barista knows what he is working with, and I don't just mean the coffee, but also the other ingredients or even the machines in your café, he will become more in touch with his work and probably enjoy it a little more.


As I indicated above, it's not enough just to have knowledge about coffee, technical skills are also important for the success of a new barista in a café. Don't assume that every person you hire as a barista has these skills by nature. By training the technical skills needed to do the job, you can also enrich your team with people with great personality traits but little or no technical experience, widening your pool of potential employees.

The key to making espresso, or any coffee for that matter, properly is to teach him the rules he needs to follow. With constant repetition and persistence, improvement will come.


  • Grinding - Basic knowledge includes an understanding of how different grind coarsenesses affect the final flavor profile of the coffee and what coarsenesses are needed for each brewing method. In addition, you need to know how to actually operate the grinder.
  • Espresso preparation - tamping, preinfusion, pressure and flow profiling. These are all important techniques to mention in addition to making espresso-based drinks. Of course, working with the espresso machine itself cannot be missed.
  • Working with milk - How to whisk the milk properly, what temperature the milk should be, what to avoid, and how to draw those beautiful cappuccino pictures should also be part of your barista training.
  • Methods of filter coffee preparation - Nowadays, coffee preparation in a café is no longer just based on espresso and espresso-based drinks, you also need to know how to prepare coffee in a drip coffee machine or how to prepare alternative preparations such as the popular V60, Aeropress or Chemex. And a good barista should also know the differences between the resulting coffees.

Maintenance - It's one thing to work with a coffee machine or grinder, but you also need to know how to clean it properly, without that a barista is simply not a proper barista.


I've bitten into this a bit before too. Simply put, you can teach anyone how to do something, but they will never do it well if they don't understand why they do it that way. And the same goes for you when training a new barista. By explaining the purpose of the activity, you give meaning to what you are doing.


No scholar fell from the sky, and the key to getting a new barista to a professional level is repetition. We all know the idea of 'practice makes perfect', but what is it about repetition that makes it so important in the preparation process? When you encourage your new baristas to practice their skills, introduce them to the techniques you are teaching them, and move those activities from their conscious to their subconscious minds so that eventually they don't even have to think about what they are doing, that's exactly it. This will make your training effective.


The importance of barista checking cannot be underestimated. You can check the whole process of preparing an employee for a barista position, for example, through individual meetings or spontaneous conversations, to make sure that everything is progressing without any hitches and that the barista is clear. This is where you can catch any problems in the process and correct them before they become more serious. Finally, evaluating the effectiveness of the training process gives you the experience to train better every time and improve your program in the future .

This table can serve as a skeleton and summary of how to run a barista course from a practical point of view.

Prepare yourself and the barista
  • Make sure the barista is prepared and invite them to ask questions.
  • Assess the barista's prior knowledge.
  • Tell the barista what you are going to teach them.
  • Tell the barista why it is important.
  • Demonstrate the activity and discuss its main steps. State the step number and total number of steps. It may also be helpful to have pre-prepared notes that the barista can add to and refer back to later.
  • Repeat the activity and discuss the main steps, key points and reasons.
  • Provide enough information to complete the activity without overwhelming them with information.
  • If necessary, provide additional tips that may make the newcomer more comfortable or job aids. In time, most of the time. everyone will find their own style.
  • Let the barista demonstrate the activity without saying anything. Provide feedback if necessary. Notice mistakes and unsure movements.
  • Let the barista do it again and discuss the main steps with him/her. Be sure to include the step number.
  • Let the barista demonstrate the skill a third time and discuss the main steps, key points of the activity and justify them. Continue practicing the skill until the barista can demonstrate it correctly.
  • Provide reinforcing and directive feedback at all steps.
  • Ask and answer any remaining questions the barista may have. Review that he or she is clear.
  • Tell the barista where or who he/she can go to for advice or help.
  • Check on the barista as he or she is doing the job.
  • Provide encouraging and constructive feedback on all actions.


Finally, anexperienced trainer or barista isalso important, for a successful barista . In a smaller café, you probably handle this internally, i.e. as managers or operations yourself. If, however, training a new barista is the last thing on your time schedule, a good option for you would be the same as for larger cafes. That is, to contact a training centre or a specialist. After all, it's one thing to know how to do things yourself and another to teach them. The training centres are fully dedicated to training baristas, so getting in touch with them is putting the training of a new barista in good hands.

The ideal choice is to combine training from a training centre, for example with an intensive barista course at our Luhacovice location, where we take care of quality teaching of the theory of coffee, but also technical knowledge, dealing with customers and above all preparing coffee in all possible ways, together with internal training of the main barista. He will teach the new baristas the things that are unique to your cafe. You can't train a new barista right on the set because you might forget something, have a lot of customers, or simply don't have time to go over things in detail, which is why this combination of training is also appropriate.