To our Black Rock Family,
In the most difficult times, the best of us are tasked with caring for our communities.
Coffee represents our passion, as well as our vehicle for a positive impact on the lives of others. Coffee routines are the definition of “normal.” When we are happy, content, and safe, we love to savor a morning cup of new beginnings and new opportunities as we embrace each new day.
While our role may not be as crucial as our beloved nurses, doctors, and other first responders we remain an important ingredient in the fabric of our community’s well being. Our mission has always been to promote connection and community through coffee. In our collective lives, we’ve never seen a greater need for this than we are seeing right now.
Today, even as we struggle personally and together, this remains our mission. This is our stand. This is who we are. We promote normalcy, safety, routine, Community, Connection, and Coffee.
Responding to COVID-19:
Over the last few weeks, we have consulted our mentors, other service industry experts, internal and external leadership, government documents/recommendations, the CDC, FDA, and various state agencies. We’ve done this because, in addition to everything else, we are also fiercely committed to the individual health, safety, and financial wellness of our employees.
While we struggle to find concrete answers, we don’t waiver in our dedication to you. We are dedicated to your wellness. We are dedicated to providing employment opportunities to those who seek it. Now, tomorrow, and for as long as people love coffee. In addition to the measures we've taken already and to maximize safety, we have quickly instituted the following measures:
- A new method for taking card payments that eliminates the need for baristas to handle a customer's cards.
- Serving only one window in double lane drive-throughs to allow for proper social distancing in drive-through only stores.
We are a family-owned and operated business. We don’t have the financial backing of others in our industry, but we do have our principles. We have Gratitude, we have Grace, we have Grit, and we are committed to Growth as people and as a business. We believe these four Gs are more durable than this pandemic.
Please know that our words are not hollow. We believe in putting our money where our mouth is, so starting today:
- Our Leaders, including VP’s and others, are voluntarily cutting our salaries by 20%.
- In addition, our Executives have volunteered to forgo their salaries entirely, which will help contribute to our ability to offer “Gratitude Pay” to our in-store employees. This means that CEO Jeff Hernandez, COO Daniel Brand, CFO Jake Spellmeyer, and CLO Bryan Pereboom and VP of Operations and Strategy, Josh Pike are all cutting their individual salaries from Black Rock, completely.
Starting today, and for the next 30 days, all in-store employees who choose to keep serving positivity, and coffee, to the community will be receiving a “Gratitude Pay” equivalent to a $4.00 per hour pay increase. This is our way of saying thank you and showing gratitude. Our hope is that you will find this helpful as you navigate these demanding times.
We are committed to our role as a conduit for the communities around us. We’re all affected differently, but at Black Rock we want to continue to be positive during hard times. While we cannot sit together and commune in our cafes, we can keep sharing the love and our sincere sentiment: We are in this together. Keep your chin up. Smile. This too, shall pass.
We are in this with you
Our Deepest Gratitude,