Christine McHugh, Author From Barista to Boardroom at Starbucks

Christine McHugh, Author, From Barista to Boardroom at Starbucks

Christine McHugh, Author From Barista to Boardroom at Starbucks

Christine McHugh is an executive coach, consultant, and former Fortune 200 and start up leader with hands-on experience.  



The Brand Called You is pleased to welcome a very special guest from the United States today. She is a multi-faceted personality with abundant experience. We are pleased to be accompanied by Christine McHugh.

About Christine:

Christine is a Coach Consultant and Startup Leader. She’s the Former Vice President of Customer Service and Operations Services for Starbucks. She is the President of the Green Apron Alliance. Christine is also an author of the book ‘From Barista to Boardroom’. She is passionate about running, cycling, and volunteering at the local community market.

In an articulate conversation with our host, Christine takes us through her very unique journey. From working in Starbucks for almost 3 decades to transforming herself into a coach, Christine’s professional growth is incredibly inspiring. 

Her journey at Starbucks:

In an organization like Starbucks that is constantly and speedily growing, it is important that workers of the organizations have to rebuild and upskill themselves. Christine believes that irrespective of the challenges she has taken every opportunity to contribute to her growth. 

“When you’re in a company that’s as big as the one I was in, and it certainly was small when I started because there were only 37 stores and not even a thousand people in the company. You know but as the company grew, trying to keep a perspective and sharpen your learning or my learning by seeing what is happening outside the company was one of those challenges.”

As an author:

A renowned author, Christine has written a memoir about her 27 years career at Starbucks. She talks about the many things she has learned while putting the book together. It is a memoir that is woven into both career and life transitions. Christine also shares the feedback she received from several women who found her journey to be inspiring.

As a woman with a professional career so vast, Christine highlights the challenges women have to face in male-dominated work environments. She believes that we still have to go a long way to bridge the persisting gender imbalance. 

“I wrote about this in my book- When I had my son and when I was pregnant, my boss didn’t think I could handle the job when I got back from maternity leave. He never would have, I would imagine, he never would have asked a male if they’d be able to handle being a working parent. In the way that he asked me, that is bias right there. So we need to kind of get ahead of that and be able to confront and have those conversations.”

Further, into the conversation, Christine talks about her role as a coach and the many important aspects of coaching. She is driven by the core value of service and focuses highly on giving back to society.

Tune in to the full video to know more


Christine McHugh is an executive coach, consultant, and former Fortune 200 and start-up leader with hands-on experience. She offers small to medium-sized organizations world-class strategy and operational practices to scale their companies and build leadership capability.

She recently released her first book, From Barista to Boardroom, a memoir about her 27-year career at Starbucks.

Other things that keep her busy are distance running and cycling (four full marathons, 25+ half marathons, and three-century rides in the books) and volunteering weekly at Northwest Harvest’s Community Market food bank.

She’s also the President of the Board of the Green Apron Alliance (a nonprofit alumni network for former Starbucks employees), on the board of Sound Health (one of king county’s most comprehensive providers of behavioral health to the area’s most vulnerable populations), and on the advisory board for Sanctuary Studios (an early stage immersive tech-enabled wellness studio concept).

She lives in Seattle, Washington, with her husband Tate and rescue dog Teddy and recently shipped her son off to his first year of college in Bozeman, Montana.

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