I've recently taken a new job with a company as an Assistant Manager for their shops. Their goal in hiring me was that I would find out why they weren't successful and fix the problem. Some of the problems they've faced have been communication and service based. Also, they admitted that they needed someone in management who understood coffee beyond drinking no-fun sf vanilla lattes.
I'm spending my first month as a double-agent, observing what goes on in the shop and reporting it to my supervisor. No one but my super-visor knows that i will eventually be in charge.
However, my first few days have been challenging, because the coffee and espresso-making situation is very serious. So far, I've seen everything that would make a professional barista cringe, from pre- and mass-steaming the milk, to pre-grinding espresso the night before, to using the grinder attachment to tamp shots for lack of a proper tamper. All of the employees are doing this, including ones that have worked in shops for more than three years, whether they're good employees or bad. Many of the mistakes being made are due to lack of proper equipment.
So, besides addressing service and communication issues, I now have to tell my supervisor that every one of the employees needs to be re-trained and she needs to spend money on more equipment. (Luckily, the equipment is little stuff like tamps, pitchers, and thermometers.)
Ultimately, what I need to know is
A) How do I gingerly break this news to my boss, who may not understand why the quality is such a problem
B) How do I re-train three shops worth of employees and make it clearly cost-effect for my supervisor.