Monthly Archives: May 2016

Ambitious Community Outreach Yields Big Results

Common Ground Food Co-op Urbana, IL Year founded:  1974 Number of members:  5,800 Member equity:  $60 Number of employees:  95 Retail square feet:  8,000 Common Ground Food Co-op in Urbana, Ill. has been one of the fastest-growing food co-ops in the country.  When they moved to Lincoln Square Mall, their expansion plans included a comprehensive approach to community outreach, customer service and education that [...]

Good Reporting: Helping boards understand workplace conditions

By Michael Healy 184 May-June 2016 Co-ops bring to life their member-owners’ common values, and for most co-ops these include a desire for the co-op to be a great workplace. In the event that your co-op’s board of directors hears employees assert that something is amiss in the workplace, how will the board react? One end of the range of options often involves the [...]

Governance Considerations in Multi-Store Co-ops

We’re in a position not unlike the years after WWII when the small grocery cooperatives began to fold in the wake of full service supermarkets with vast parking lots. Jerry Voorhis, former president of The Cooperative League (now NCBA CLUSA), made these poignant remarks about the lessons learned from that time: 1. No cooperative business or institution ever stands still, it grows, expands, develops—or [...]