Yes,for contrary to the last rates of pay and worker agreements & contracts, the new lax worker employee manual (plus pay rises) sheds a light of hope for this sector of employment. For many of these customer service jobs/roles started out at minimum wage (which as we know does not coincide with the cost of living). So creating this leeway & raise for the employees at Starbuck's gives them more confidence that the job they are doing is feasible & right for them which will in turn make them more positive.
Yes, I believe Starbucks new policies will improve moral. By loosening the stringent dress code which has been in place for years, they are now allowing the staff to show who they really are. Alot of people who work at Starbucks have tattoo's which they are very proud of and have become a part of them. By having to cover them up, they are almost loosing a piece of themselves and this will allow them to get that piece back.
Often employees are disgruntled because of over-enforcement of company policy and lack of flexibility, all the while being undercompensated for their efforts. The attempt that Starbucks is making to make their employees more comfortable is admirable and should help potential job seekers to feel more confident about joining the company.
Lax standards create lax employees. This is because people will not be on their toes as much as they should. People will usually only work as hard as they are supposed to -- for what will provide them punishment or reward. Most Starbucks employees seem to work hard, but now that might change.