To Veneziano, a training program is only as good as the people who teach it. That’s why the roaster is investing in its trainers to empower customers to create careers of significance in coffee.
In the world of competitive coffee championships, precision matters. Every seemingly minor variable can have a major influence on the flavour and presentation of a barista’s coffee, with the winner often separated by just fractions. Because of this, the competitive scene attracts those in the industry who are passionate, skilled, and committed.
Veneziano Coffee Roasters has an active history participating in coffee competitions and is channeling its team’s expertise and experience into its training programs.
“All of our training stems from our experience in barista competitions. It’s the pinnacle of the coffee industry and many of the skills translate to café baristas. We believe in teaching these skills and striving for excellence with our students,” says Jade Jennings, National Training and Development Manager at Veneziano.
The roaster offers a range of training courses that vary in skill level. These include Espresso Foundations, Brewing Ratios, Latte Art, Cupping, and Roasting Fundamentals. The courses are designed to support professional baristas to either round out their skills or hone in on a particular area.
According to Jade, regardless of which course a student participates in, the most unique aspect is the trainer’s ability to create impact, purpose, and connection with each of their students.
“Our trainers have been in the industry for years, usually as a barista or café owner, which means they innately know the challenges our customers face and how to work with them to improve,” she says.
“But we don’t just rely on experience. At the heart of Veneziano, we are passionate about investing in our people so that they can add value to our customers.”
To do this, Veneziano trainers must pass multiple levels of assessments to gain their accreditation. This includes the Level Two Assessment, in which they must successfully perform under a competition-style format to certified World Coffee Events (WCE) or Australian Specialty Coffee Association (ASCA) judges.
“Most people don’t pass our assessments on the first go and we actually don’t mind that. It’s not just about passing, it’s how they learn personally and professionally that matters,” Jade says.
“These high standards ensure our people have the best possible skills and experience to develop and add value to our customers.”
In addition to a competitive technical skillset, Veneziano seeks people who are personable and adept communicators.
“We look for trainers who are relatable, nurturing, and willing to have some fun with their baristas,” Jade says.
She adds that the most rewarding part of running training sessions is knowing that students pass the skills they learn onto the rest of the team at their workplace, which improves the whole business.
“There is truly nothing like the feeling you get when you see a student experience that ‘ah-ha moment.’ They become inspired and take this back to their colleagues, which leads to better coffee across the business. The better coffee means an increase in loyalty from customers and also additional exposure through word of mouth and reviews – the training is always a win-win,” she says.
To match the prowess of its people, Veneziano has heavily invested into its facilities to ensure that students have the optimal tools and environment to learn.
“We love showing off our training studios as they are a real spectacle. Our coffee pods are self-contained benches, set up as a benchmark example of a high-performing café. Our students have the opportunity to learn on state-of-the-art equipment,” Jade says.
“We also teach students about workflow and provide the tools to create consistency and efficiency. We know we’ve done our job when they apply even just one piece of knowledge to improving how they make coffee their own venue.”
Veneziano currently has training studios in Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane, with Adelaide and Canberra soon to follow.
For more information, visit venezianocoffee.com.au/barista-training-courses