engagement

Using Ends to Tell the Story

The author Stephen Covey made “begin with the end in mind” a famous touchstone with his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Beginning with the end in mind is “Habit #2.” Of all the habits he writes about, this one involves the most reflection, pushing the reader to consider whether what they are doing is by design or default. Habit #2 encourages [...]

Ends Outline Co-op Communication Strategy

Three Rivers Market Knoxville, TN Year founded: 1976 Number of members: 8,200 Member investment: $200 Number of employees: 40 Retail square feet: 10,000 A few years ago, Jackie Arthur, the general manager at Three Rivers Market in Knoxville, TN, decided to switch up her approach to co-op communications with her board, staff and the community. One of the tactics she adopted was to reformat [...]

Telling Stories with Intention

In our digitally-connected universe, there has been an explosion of stories—and many of them come to us like processed food. Quick, canned, too many empty calories. So much of what people encounter in the form of news or stories about organizations or individuals feels inconsequential or insincere. All of us have experienced what that feels like, wading through an information overload to try to [...]

Participation: Systems & Structures

Systems & Structures within a cooperative are essential to creating and maintaining strong communication between co-op stakeholder groups.  Rebecca Torpie shares some brief points about how these systems can better be leveraged to create and sustain meaningful engagement at your co-op.

On Participation

In her work as a Participation & Engagement consultant for cooperatives, Rebecca Torpie gets to see many successful campaigns engendering authentic relationships between co-op stakeholders.  From members, to staff, to community members, the connections between these groups is so powerful, and Rebecca shares with you some of the best strategies from co-ops around the US.

Who Decides? Owner Participation in Cooperative Decisions

Cooperatives are a shared asset, managed for the common good of the owners.  At its heart, cooperation is a human enterprise that begins with relationships, predicated on the idea that the co-op’s strength is democracy and participation.  The ongoing quality of those relationships are built, strengthened, and even tested in myriad ways in a cooperative. Structurally, co-op members elect a board of directors to [...]

Including Members in the Ends Dialogues

How is your board spending its time? It’s easy to get caught up in the delegation and accountability portion of a board’s job.  Yet there’s a whole other side to the work that is equally important, and the ultimate endeavor of the board: spending time thinking about the co-op’s desired outcomes, members and member needs. A board is accountable for results produced, but ends [...]

Co-op Fair Brings Community Together

Weaver Street Market in Carrboro, N.C. is continually working to cultivate community connections.  They host multiple events every year, and the Co-op Fair is one special event that brings hundreds of co-op owners together for a day of festive learning and activities—and voting, too.  “It is wildly successful,” said Brenda Camp, the co-op’s owner services coordinator. The first fair was launched in 2012 in [...]

People’s Expands: A Tale of Two Co-ops

Michelle Schry, General Manager People's Food Cooperative, LaCrosse, WI & Rochester, MN   Learn about the process, the challenges, and the triumphs of the unique "merger" that took place in Rochester. Michelle Schry, GM, tells about the engagement, the participation, and the support that poured from BOTH communities.