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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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.

Incredible amount of valuable insights here. Frankly I don't think you could unpick all of it from just one viewing. I certainly will be going back and reviewing the course material again and again for the grains of wisdom imparted.

I really enjoyed his lessons. I also liked that it came from a compassionate place and not cut throat.

Howard was passionate about what he was doing, he brought a compassion to business and an honesty. Good guys can finish 1st.

After taking this class, I grew angry. I wasted thousands of dollars learning this stuff at a university. He's so awesome!



More anecdotes. Get in the mud. Use examples more often to support your claims. These examples, anecdotes help viewers correlate concepts to their own challenges and opportunities.

Ekin Ö.

When I read about how Howard brought the Italian coffee shop concept to the US, I immediately noticed that the success behind Starbucks is culture. If the first thing I'm looking for in a new city is a Starbucks, it means that Starbucks is my second home. Whenever there is one around, I feel comfortable.

Harris G.

I wish I could have listened to Howard 25 years ago when I first started my own business. But then, I guess Howard would have liked to listen to Howard 25 years ago. I wish he would run for President. We need a guy like him: smart, kind-hearted, with his ego in check.


I am in awe of his demeanor. He is inspirational and relatable for any individual who wants to participate in achieving goals that are greater than themselves.

A fellow student

I just love Howard class session, it is very make sense and reality speech and give us lot inspiration on his past experience

R F.

Really enjoyed the insights here. The key words/concepts that stood out to me: 1. Elevate a group of people … that they are part of something larger than themselves. Especially in a technology centric world that emphasizes instant gratification, I believe many people are still seeking "meaning" in their daily movements. To make the work environment, where one spends most their days and energy, a place to find a deeper sense of motivation is a profound undertaking - but perhaps the most rewarding in performance and general fulfillment. 2. Anything that comes up that conflicts or is not consistent with the values of the company has to be addressed swiftly. I have seen too many times where inconsistent actions go unresolved, which spreads like a vine. I do agree that a leader must be proactive in recognizing and addressing these issues when small - swiftly. Great segment - many thanks to Howard Schultz

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.