Retailers face lots of challenges, profit margins are small, inventory needs to turn, and the competition is fierce. Getting customers into the store and keeping them satisfied should be everyone’s focus to boost sales and enhance profitability. Retailers faced with flat or declining sales need to take a closer look at their marketing and customer service experience. Since food co-ops are owned by the [...]
Ashland Food Co-op in Ashland, OR is a successful food co-op in an artsy university town that also draws a lot of year-round tourists. The co-op is especially known for its outreach and popularity in the community. Recently, they faced a dilemma about this very thing. What should the co-op do when their dynamic and long-term marketing director retired? What could the co-op do to build on that success in a rapidly changing market?
By Rebecca Torpie, Thane Joyal 196 May-June 2018 What does it mean to be an owner of a consumer cooperative? At the most fundamental level, cooperative ownership means that we are in business together. And for the owners of a cooperative that is under substantial market pressure (and what business isn’t?), everything the business does needs to match the needs and aspirations of the community that [...]
You can't have a conversation about inclusion without first expanding the circle and inviting everyone to the table. Prasanna Regmi, General Manager at Davis Food Co-op in Davis, CA talks about the work being done at Davis starting with the core of the co-op network, the store.
1 + 1 = 3 according to Dan Arnett, General Manager of Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op. The co-op can, through its interrelationships with the community, amplify the missions of all involved.
Co-op donation and local giving programs is sometimes not enough. In order for the cooperative to remain a central and key player in the local community it can sometimes mean getting involved in local government, planning committees, and more. These are the kinds of strategies employed by Liz Haywood, CEO of People's Food Cooperative of LaCrosse and Rochester. Here Haywood calls co-ops out for [...]
The board of directors at People's Food Co-op in Kalamazoo, MI have committed to developing their awareness around racial equity. Board President Hether Frayer tells the Kzoo board story about how they ensconced their social justice values into co-op policy and monitoring.
Change can be uncomfortable. By discussing what we may be afraid of losing it can be a valuable process to get to being excited about what we might better, or more of. Chris Maher, General Manager of BriarPatch Food Co-op in Grass Valley, CA tells the story behind the BriarPatch name, and its deep connections to a rich history of cooperation across the Northern [...]
The closing of a nearby neighborhood grocer presented what could have been a great sales boost for Whole Foods Co-op in Duluth, MN. But the neighbors weren't beating down the doors of WFD. Sarah Hanningan, GM, tells the story of what it took to reach out to their neighbors and their communities. Having 'Everyone Welcome' printed on their awning simply wasn't going to be [...]
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 [...]