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In this day and age, it is virtually inexcusable to not have a coffeemaker in your office, even if you have a virtual office. And due to the wide variety of ways to brew coffee, what kind of coffeemaker you choose, and how you serve your coffee, might say more than you anticipate about your law practice.
In the grand scheme of things, law firms really shouldn't try to cut costs when it comes to coffee. Especially if you have staff or associates, providing high quality coffee is one of the perks where you get the most bang for your buck. Also, though you might not think that a client would care if your coffee is good or bad, great coffee can definitely help present an image of being a premier law firm. Below, you can read about what your coffeemaker signals to the world about your law practice.
Instant Coffee: You Don't Mind Being Hated
You can have a can or two of instant kicking around the office for yourself and opposing counsels you hate, but if that's all you have, you're telling everyone that works for you and visits your office that you dislike them personally and wish for them to suffer. If you like instant coffee, there's no need to torture others with it as well. Sure it's easy, and with enough sweetener and cream, you don't even taste it, but if someone wants coffee, don't expect instant to satisfy.
Drip Machine: You're Trapped in the 80s/Still Use Fax Machines
The classic drip machine is okay and your staff isn't likely to hate you for having it. If it is an old machine that's seen better days, and/or you get low quality coffee beans/grounds, expect to lose productivity due to coffee runs. If you're running an old drip machine, you might want to poll the office to see whether it's time for an update.
However, if you have a newer, good quality, drip machine and you pair it with high quality coffee, it can produce a good cup of coffee. If your staff (lawyer and otherwise) are trained on how to use it (yes, hold training sessions to teach lawyers to make their own coffee), people will think your office is serving a pour over, which is the current pinnacle of the American coffee experience.
Pour Over: You Really Do Care About People
If you have an individual pour over set up, or a chemex, you not only are showing the world that when you drink coffee you want to taste it, but that you want others to enjoy not just their coffee, but also life. This is the least efficient and most time consuming to make per cup, but it is the tastiest, doesn't cost much, and says a lot about your judgement.
Pod Systems: You Prize Efficiency Over Quality, or Quality Over Cash
If you only have a Keurig, or some other pod system, it tells everyone that you think efficiency matters more than quality, or that you don't really know what quality coffee tastes like because you dump flavored creamer in there like some neophyte. Although, at this point, just about every office has one sitting around somewhere because there's always some employee that's a diehard Keurig user and brought in their old one.
If you have a really fancy pod system that's going to set you back a buck a cup, like the Nespresso Verturo, then you're telling everyone you're willing to pay an arm and a leg for quality, which probably isn't that bad, but penny pinching clients might see it as burning overhead.
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