What Servais did wasn’t necessarily bad — who hasn’t been frustrated in a customer-facing job? — it just shouldn’t have been put on TikTok, or really anywhere online.
The post — which was uploaded in September and has since been taken down — was done as a skit at the Indiana Starbucks location Servais worked. The purpose was to mock customers and their common requests.
According to BuzzFeed:
“In one example, an employee playing a customer hands a cold drink back and says, “I wanted this hot,” and Eli responds, grabbing the drink, “I’m so sorry,” and chucks it behind him. In another example, the person playing the customer says, “Oh, I wanted extra whipped cream,” and Eli is seen filling so much whipped cream in the drink that it foams over.”
The situations in the skit are over the top and are obviously the kind of goofy fun we all have during boring moments on the job. The post resonated with TikTok users, racking in 400,000 views and 60,000 likes.
A month after Servais uploaded the video, Starbucks found the post and the corporation didn’t like it. Servais apologized and asserted that there was no ill will intended.
After his meeting with his district manager, Servais received a separation letter from Starbucks, which he shared with BuzzFeed News.
The letter said Servais “demonstrated behavior not aligned with Starbucks Mission Values by posting content on Tik Tok that shows partners mocking customers [sic] orders, throwing drinks outside of the drive thru window and fanning out money from the cash till.”
After the post, Servais said he would trade all his views and likes for his job back.
“There were no customers there. We were closed or about to be closed, so we were just having fun,” he told BuzzFeed News. “Nothing was broken or vandalized.”
He has since reached out to the manager in an attempt to be re-hired. He is eligible, however, not in the same district.
As of this writing, Servais is still unemployed.