Board Discipline

In order to be effective in leading a retail food cooperative, a board must protect the integrity of its process.  Two keys to sound board process are the ability to speak with one voice and the ability to protect confidential information.  Most often these objectives are achieved with a shared understanding of the board’s roles and responsibilities, by establishing a set of clearly articulated [...]

‘Fresh Start’ Bylaws Template

UPDATED: February 27, 2016 Bylaws are an important set of governing agreements in which the member-owners of a cooperative articulate the special dual relationship they have with each other: members of an association and owners of a business. In the bylaws, the member-owners define how they will make certain decisions together and how they will empower a board to make other decisions on their [...]

Bylaws basics

How Do We Know If  We Have the Bylaws We Need? To meet our needs, bylaws must allow for smooth functioning of the coop's internal governance processes while being consistent with both our owners' values and with the relevant laws. Bylaws are the means by which the owners delegate authority to the board.  Under that authority, the board ensures that the co-op meets owners' [...]

Why Rehash the Old When You Can Start New? Try Fresh Start Bylaws

It is the duty of boards to keep the co-op’s bylaws up to date on behalf of the membership, yet board members sometimes feel it is an overwhelming and potentially tedious task. That’s why CDS Consulting Co-op members Michael Healy and Thane Joyal developed the Fresh Start Bylaws template to help give boards a more user-friendly process for updating their bylaws. According to Healy, [...]