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.
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.
This discussion guide is meant to accompany the process for setting General Manager Compensation as set forth in documents in the Columinate library. Please discuss this process with your CBLD consultant to find an approach that works for your cooperative. This process is based on the CBLD Policy Template C2 - The Board’s Job. If your board has a different policy, be sure to follow the policy you have.
This discussion and process guide is meant to accompany other documents related to General Manager evaluation in the Columinate library. Please reference these documents, and confer with your CBLD consultant where appropriate to devise a system that works for your cooperative. This process is based on the CBLD Policy Template D4 - Evaluating the GM. If your board has a different policy, be sure to follow the policy you have.
Yes, it's true. HR specialist Carolee Colter's recent study of trends in the national Co-op GM Compensation Database reveals a disturbing trend of gender disparity. At every size of co-op from the smallest to the largest, female GMs earn less than their male peers.
The Board’s Job Creating board policies is no easy task. Clearly articulating the board’s expectations of a general manager takes a lot of energy and focus—so boards can justifiably congratulate themselves once they’ve written down their expectations in a way that a manager can easily understand. But the board’s work doesn’t end there. Many boards, once they’ve created their policies and learned to empower—rather [...]
When Anne Carter came to Medford Food Co-op in Medford, Oregon, the startup co-op had been open for two years and was still establishing its operations and governance. Their internal situation was mirrored in the community-at-large. Medford was once a logging town, and the current 225,000 inhabitants were transitioning their economy to tourism and business services. That new dynamic, and a focus on health and sustainability, also led to the creation of the food co-op.
Remember the first time you walked into a food cooperative? Maybe your initial reaction fell somewhere along the continuum of “I found my people” to “what in the world is this place?” Maybe you liked the food. Maybe you liked the mission. Or the people were nice. And that convinced you to stay. Ultimately, when people walk into a food co-op, we want them [...]
By Carolee Colter March-April 2017 View data by downloading attached PDF. Data from 104 co-ops with annual sales ranging from $1M to $74M In 2006 and 2011, this magazine published studies on general manager (GM) compensation. Continuing that tradition, here’s a look at the state of management compensation in food co-ops today. The 104 general managers in this study serve co-ops ranging in size [...]