Two upcoming classes in the GM Development program cover interesting and relevant topics for diverse general managers, but especially those who are new to their position. The first is called “Co-op Culture, Diversity, and Engaging Stakeholders.” It explores the way cooperative culture helps a general manager bring together all of the relationships within their co-op. The course also focuses on increasing and strengthening diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) within participating co-ops.
Taking Control: For resident-owned communities, Marcia Sprague provides community and board trainings
Columinate has a small team of organizers, trainers, and governance specialists who work specifically with resident-owned communities. The team offers "bench strength" to ROC USA®, and ROC affiliates work by providing communities with temporary team members who pitch in to do the work of community organizing, governance coaching, and co-op education and training. Meet Marcia Sprague.
The Columinate Cooperative Board Leadership Development (CBLD) program provides annual board support that includes monthly consulting, facilitated board retreats, board training, and resource development. CBLD helps boards take advantage of their collective knowledge and talents, identify their annual goals, and connect with specific resources for their challenges of the moment. The program is run and staffed by industry professionals with experience and expertise in a variety of areas, and it can help to broaden the knowledge base each co-op has to draw upon to meet their goals.
Today, we are highlighting another one of our talented instructors of the General Manager Development Program, Audrey Griffin. Participants can still join Columinate’s General Manager Development Program for 2022. Through this program, new (or experienced) GMs develop the core grocery management skills they need to successfully lead their co-op. The program currently offers seven modules, covering topics ranging from financial metrics to marketing, all of which are taught by an experienced team of grocery retail experts. Audrey Griffin has been a Certified Public Accountant for nearly twenty years. Working primarily with cooperatives and nonprofit organizations, she offers services that include conducting assessments, delivering financial training for boards, preparing financial projects, and completing tax returns.
The General Manager Development Program works with both new and experienced general managers (GMs) to develop the core grocery management skills they need to successfully lead their co-op. The program currently offers seven modules, all of which are taught by an experienced team of grocery retail experts. Throughout this summer, we'll be introducing each of the instructors in the program. Today, we are highlighting retail grocery marketing expert Rebecca Torpie.
Managing a food co-op takes a large and varied set of skills, some of which even a highly talented general manager might need help developing. With an updated curriculum and a roster of talented instructors, the GM Development Program provides both new and veteran GMs with the support and the tools they need to successfully manage and lead their food co-op.
After seeing how the co-op world has shifted away from in-person events during the pandemic, Columinate consultant and leadership strategist Art Sherwood wants to leverage the lessons he learned over the last two years to help co-op general managers be more strategic about multi-year planning. Sherwood has recently launched the Cooperative Strategic Leadership (CSL) program, an annual subscription course that utilizes different modalities to help co-op leaders build practical plans that are meant to be put into action every day.
When a co-op board hires a new general manager, the directors know that there’s seldom an “ideal candidate” out there waiting. Instead, they choose the candidate who offers the best potential to meet the specific qualifications that the board has decided will advance the vision for their co-op. Since boards often realize that their new general manager may be lacking in certain key areas, they may look for resources to help mitigate the new leader’s deficits and build on their strengths.
The new year is a time for reflection and revision, and co-op boards are no exception. Whether your board has just decided to implement Policy Governance® or your board wants to refresh existing policies, the updated 2021 Policy Register Template provides a great opportunity to start these conversations.
Anyone who has worked in a grocery store in the past two years has seen and been through a lot. Among that cohort, co-op general managers have faced a unique set of challenges. Here's what three GM's had to say about their experiences of 2021.