Leadership Development

Understanding the Meaning of “Speaking With One Voice”

By Michael Healy 189 March-April 2017 Boards of directors regularly struggle with the concept of “speaking with one voice”— primarily because the concept has a dual meaning. Within the context of Policy Governance, which many food co-op boards use, the principle of board holism is sometimes described as “speaking with [...]

How to be an Effective Board President

What’s the difference between an excellent board president and a so-so one? Being an effective president requires a host of proficiencies, attributes and knowledge—it’s no easy job! A mix of people skills, the talent to manage and a curiosity and willingness to develop a keen understanding of your co-op’s business [...]

Growing Leaders from Within

By Melanie Reid 186 Sept-Oct 2016 As co-ops evolve and expand and our industry continuously changes, it’s important that we have mechanisms in place that enable employees to see career pathways within our organizations. Opportunities to learn new things and grow within the organization are important for everyone on the [...]

Personalities and Performance: Appreciating Differences with Help from Myers-Briggs Assessments

By Joel Kopischke #187 Nov.-Dec 2016 There is no shortage of stressors for people involved in co-ops today. With challenging economic and political conditions added to the hustle and bustle of modern life, topped off with a seeming deterioration of interpersonal communication and growing polarization of personal beliefs, it’s more [...]

First Impressions and Long-lasting Relationships: The rewards of great customer service

By Michael McCary 186 Sept-Oct 2016 Providing an unbeatable shopping experience is no longer optional for cooperatives—it is imperative. In the growing and increasingly competitive world of natural foods, cooperatives need to perform better than their competitors, especially in providing outstanding customer service. Customer service is one of the key [...]

Connecting the Dots: Strategic Board Leadership in Action

By Thane Joyal 185 July-Aug 2016   The future is unknowable. Or is it?  Courageous leadership relies in large measure on wise choices. In his entertaining novels, Robert Parker often references the military strategist Clausewitz for the proposition that you should “plan not for what you think your enemy will [...]

Co-op General Manager Success Profile: GM Role Requires Core Competencies

By Carolee Colter, Lauren Olsen, Marilyn Scholl 183 Mar-Apr 2016 It takes a lot to manage a food co-op. Co-op general managers (GMs) are responsible not only for the retail operations but also for budgeting, financial analysis, marketing, information technology, and human resources—functions that are provided by corporate headquarters to [...]

Co-op Cafe – Asheville – 2016

We had a great day of conversation focused on embracing change through courageous leadership in Asheville!   47 people including staff, managers and directors from 12 co-ops participated Thank you for contributing during the day - adding your insights, perspectives and quilt squares! You can now download your very own color copy of [...]

Co-op Cafe – Keene – 2016

We had a great day of conversation focused on embracing change through courageous leadership in Keene!  A record-breaking 131 people including staff, managers and directors from 24 co-ops participated -- and a special shout-out to River Valley Co-op who rented a bus and brought 40 people from their co-op! Thank you for contributing [...]

Co-op Cafe – Madison – 2016

We had a great day of conversation focused on embracing change through courageous leadership in Madison!  Thirty-two people, including staff, managers and directors from 14 co-ops participated. Thank you for contributing during the day - adding your insights, perspectives and quilt squares! You can now download your very own color copy of an [...]