Business, Politics & Society

Overinvest in Culture

Howard Schultz

Lesson time 07:49 min

Howard defines what culture means to him and ways to maintain a healthy balance.

Howard Schultz
Business Leadership
Former Starbucks CEO shares lessons from nearly 40 years of leading one of the world’s top brands.
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Build a Business That Lasts

Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz rose from a childhood in public housing to leading a company that revolutionized the way the world drinks coffee. With no formal business education, he relied on his values while growing a 13-store chain into a global brand with more than 250,000 employees. In his 90-minute video series, Howard shares what he’s learned about business leadership and being an entrepreneur.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Real and honest advise. Inspiring and believable. Loved it!!!

Was a great honor and pleasure! Please get more like this!

A point of views of entereprenuer sight from starting the business and then manage them to sustain & growing

It made very complex business ideas easy to understand


RJane @.

I disagree with the concept of always picking someone up after a fall. When you stop picking her/him up, he/she is going to learn grit and determination by standing up and stepping forward after a fall. @RJanesRealm

Kitsy P.

"The equity of the brand has to be a reflection of the culture of the company".

Paul F.

This lesson here is worth 100x times the price of the class. You don´t have to own a business to start applying this. You as an individual have a culture, core purpose and reason for being or doing what you are doing. From now on asking if what you´re doing is aligned with your personal culture should be a MUST.

Michael L.

But for big corporates culture is just a con trick ... getting employees to believe they are a part of something bigger than themselves is fine when you are delivering public services and genuinely enhancing the lives of others and making a big contribution to community. But selling coffee, please? The only way you do that is by giving employees a stake in the company or annual bonuses based on company profitability. Otherwise it’s just BS designed to squeeze more out of employees without paying them more.

Kerry G.

I am an owner of a small print and branding company and enjoy listening to Howard and his thoughts and beliefs on corporate culture. I had small children when I started my business and took them on business trips and trade shows. Today they are in their 30s and have their own small businesses.

Irene K.

The most significant take for me here is, imprint organisational culture like you are raising your child.

Nadia P.

This class reminded me of Richard Branson's wisdom about employees. "If you look after your staff, they'll look after your costumers" or "Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don't want to". Before opening my business I simply could not quit my job because I was treated so nicely. It was one of the reasons I had such a hard time letting go!

Jack S.

Thought provoking lesson. Highlighting the need to foster an environment that strives to find the balance between a performance based culture and a humane culture struck me as both necessary but yet sometimes feeling futile. When things get tough it's so easy to think of the immediate "bottom line", and that being a part of the team means collective sacrifice (not that the sacrifice is ever equitable). Yet as Howard has said throughout the course, it is important to aim for what is sustainable. It is always in the enterprise's best interest to not only create an environment that people will want to work a long time, but also one that hey would be able to work a long time without burning out or becoming disenchanted.

Tara Jade B.

What ever company Howard picked, it would have been a success. The way he talks about culture in the company, and linking in to raising children, is just - wow - breathtaking. And so true. It must be a real privilege to work with him at your side, and many, many, many - I´ll say it again - many bosses would learn a lot by listening to him and adapting his way of leading.

A fellow student

YES! When a leader loses their culture, they lose their company. Every successful leader focuses on culture.