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In my office we have a coffee machine that was my idea to get. The VP was nice enough to go out and buy one on the company dollar, and she also supplies the Milk/Sugar/Coffee grinds as well.

Now I just need to say - she isn't a bad person by any means - but she makes quite bad coffee. By this, I mean.. it is some of the worst coffee I've ever had in my life. It's way too weak - and is pretty much just slightly caffeinated water.

The real question here - is how do I let her know just how bad her coffee is, and that everyone else likes strong coffee without hurting her feelings? It's an awkward conversation because she/the company pays for all of the supplies.

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    Holy hell man you are overreacting. Get the VP to buy a thermos or extra jug for the machine so you can make two kinds of coffee. Problem solved. – Lilienthal Jul 21 '16 at 13:27
  • @Lilienthal So are you suggesting to tell her to brew her own coffee into a thermos/jug? The problem isn't exclusive to me. Everybody in the office hates her coffee. Pretty sure you would have the same response if a grown woman was running to the kitchen to beat you to making coffee.. – ballBreaker Jul 21 '16 at 13:33
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    FYI I believe the rather vitriolic nature of your post is what's attracting downvotes. If you care about those and want to leave this question up for other people who find themselves in a coffee war then you can edit it down to a few simple lines and leave out your rather colourful opinion on the VP's coffee and her behaviour. – Lilienthal Jul 21 '16 at 13:49
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    It could start without you calling it bad / worse. It is weak coffee and she likes it. Getting into it over coffee with the person that controls your paycheck is not a good career plan. If you don't like her coffee then bring a thermos from home. – paparazzo Jul 21 '16 at 14:35
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    Does she ever drink your coffee? Maybe she assumes one scoop per pot is how it works. – user8365 Jul 21 '16 at 19:46
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Just talk to her. I think there are a couple of scenarios.

1 - She likes light coffee. Go with the two pots suggestion. But that does not only depend on her, all the office should be part of that too. Like what pot is what, what happens when the pot is empty, cleaning, etc.

2 - But there is also the possibility she doesn't know how to make coffee. I never made any cup coffee in my life. In that case you may have to teach it. Of course try to use better language, dont say worst coffee I've ever had in my life. Say you want try a new method and compare results.

  • If after teaching you still can't get an acceptable coffee, you may have to suggest, again in a polite way, she should leave coffee duty to someone else.
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She likes her coffee. You like your coffee. Get two coffee pots. Problem solved.

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  • It would appear the problem is a struggle for control over making the coffee more than the coffee itself. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Jul 21 '16 at 17:07
  • Well, if resources are scarce (just a single pot) then control over it is important to drink the coffee you like. Once the resource is abundant (two coffee pots), struggle for control will become meaningless and cease. – nvoigt Jul 21 '16 at 17:10
  • Well, that's your interpretation. I cannot see any evidence of it. I suggest removing the resource problem and see if the struggle persist. If it does, maybe you are right. – nvoigt Jul 21 '16 at 17:14
  • Perhaps you should explain that in your answer. That would make this much better from the SE standards standpoint – IDrinkandIKnowThings Jul 21 '16 at 17:16
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Talk to her as you would to a friend. Suggest to her that the serious coffee drinkers would probably want a stronger brew. If necessary, offer to take responsibility for brewing; if you cared enough to request the machine, you care enough to take responsibility for it.

Or, as @Lillanthal suggested, just brew two pots. That's really the better answer for "not everyone likes" -- acknowledge it, accept it, and address those who do without disrupting those who don't. If nobody drinks the weak stuff, that will be noted. Really, this is no harder than brewing both caf and decaf...

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  • This is a pretty good idea. The only problem is that she's trying to take the responsibility of brewing away from me – ballBreaker Jul 21 '16 at 13:31
  • See my added paragraph. Accept that she might be right and solve the problem without invalidating her opinion. Additional carafes ate cheap; nearly free if you buy them at Goodwill or similar. – keshlam Jul 21 '16 at 13:36
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Suggest that she take half a cup of the full strength coffee and fill the rest with hot water. That way she gets the weaker cup she likes and the rest of you get good coffee. While I am the last person to say that coffee is not one of the most important factors in having a good day, I don't know that it is worth this level of vitriol.

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    You're right. I think there must be some resentment built up from other issues. Should have left that out of this post. – ballBreaker Jul 21 '16 at 14:17

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