General Meeting Agenda 04/25/2018


General Meeting Agenda

Date/Time: Wednesday, April 25,  7:00 - 9:00 pm

The Co-op: 18 Putnam Ave, Brooklyn


Facilitator:  Chris

Note-taker: Matthew

Note-takers - please see link to secretary responsibilities.

      Timekeeper: Sarah


Directors Present: Cecile, Christina, Chris, Matthew

Directors Absent:

Others in attendance: Renee (membership chair)


Any person attending may participate equally in discussions, but only Co-op members/owners may vote on any issues. Member/owners may receive work credit if they attend (allotted 1 time a year).


Next General Meeting is _Wednesday May 23rd, 7-9pm, 2018 at a location TBD. Next Board Meeting is Wednesday May 2nd, 7-9pm at a location TBD. Want to be a facilitator, secretary, timekeeper or to propose items for a future GM agenda. Please email (work credit always allotted)


Welcome/Orientation  7:00-7:05 (5 min)

Welcome and introductions. Brief explanation of the purpose of the Board Meeting. Questions welcomed!

The focus of this General Meeting will be the restructuring of Finance; #4 item on Agenda


Consent Agenda  7:05-7:15 (10 min)

A collective vote on decisions that have already been made or that don’t generally require/solicit discussion. Attendees can pull out any item they would like more discussion on, and this item will be moved to discussion at the end of the meeting. Information on all consent agenda item votes will be circulated in advance of the meeting.



0. Pricing Committee Update


  • Nathan and Michael

  • Need our pricing data from Revel

  • Basket of 27 items for comparison

  • Current project: compare markup of

  • If we increase our prices, we will be able to compete just barely with other local grocery stores

  • There’s a risk in raising prices; could lead to lower sales

  • If we just look at the budget items, we can’t quite compete: we don’t have store brand items

  • We can only compete on our particular basket; other stores have a wider selection

  • Other things to consider: quality, perception of price

  • Comparison is not exact; pricing team needs to make a lot of assumptions

1. Store Coordinator Update  7:20-7:30 (10 min)  -- Matthew


  • Last day for SCs was Monday, April 23

  • We have not assigned people to do specific things that SCs have done

  • What has already been assigned?

    • Renee Bergan is taking on The Weekly

    • Matthew will figure out all of the things that need to switch over from one address to another

    • Lindsay has taken on project management of the buildout

  • Chris: Doesn’t feel like Lindsay should be tasked with emails


2. Lease Committee and Relocation  7:30- 7:40 ( 10min)


  • Current space:

    • Got a lease extension until May 15; we got kicked out of the space about 10 days and roofing has been delayed

    • It was a simple ask, and we got a quick response from the Collymores’ lawyer

    • Having our lease signed was helpful

    • Current deal to purchase 18 Putnam is not closed

    • Lease starts May 1; first rent check we need to write is for Aug. 1

  • Buildout progress report:

    • Charlie, roofer and owner of building next door, stopped in

    • Temporary patch on roof did not prevent leaks during today’s rain

    • Roof needs to be dry and after in order for the adhesive to work

    • Currently figuring out ways to work around the leak

    • Naceo visited and gave us a run-down of what to happen for rodent-proofing; would take a long time for unskilled labor to

    • We are hiring a handyman at $140/day to cement all the exposed brick in the basement and back room

  • Finance side of things:

    • We are currently tracking the budget and the expenses

    • There is a running tally of expenses, including who is owed money

  • Refrigeration move date is now May 14.


3. Committee Reports  7:40 - 8:00 (20 min) Add discussions as needed from committees and liaisons below.

if there is nothing to be discussed or decided but a report is needed add at the end of this agenda.


  • Finance and Investments:
    Committee chair Bianca Orlando, Liaison Christina Travers

  • Issue:the finance computer: Christina want to move it to Bianca’s house for the move; Chris can help with the access with different IP

  • Move to cloud based computing October 1st with the new fiscal year; Renee: Christina, you can help find solutions to Bianca’s problem identification


  • Merchandising:
    Committee chair Sarah Chinn, Liaison Chris Gollmar

  • People have repurposed themselves; Mid-May or second week working out reordering; diversifying? Work with price point;

  • ACTION ITEM: merch folks handle the remaining food; bagged and boxed food may go to people’s homes


  • Marketing, Website:
    Acting committee chairs DK Holland and Sigourney Woodfork, Liaison Chris Gollmar

    • In-store signage project; Marketing will be reaching out to other committees for their signage/communication needs.

    • Social media

    • There are subcommittees; Print materials (flyering); New Website chaired by Sigourney, Sonia, the transfer over to Square Space; In Store Signage team: Morgan, Ally; Social Media (FB): Olivia, Ally doing Instagram

    • We need people with skills


  • Outreach:
    Committee chair Juliana Pinto, Liaison Chris Gollmar


  • The materials we are passing out right now are the IGG flyer and the event flyer. These will be used until May 1 and April 30, respectively.

  • Juliana has reached out to marketing to create a new flyer to promote our new location and give more information about who we are and what we do. Hopefully this will be done by May 1st. Going forward, this is the flyer that will be used until we open again and start a big membership drive.

  • We've had some help from PSFC members to spread the word

  • We definitely still need more help, but so do all the committees, I'm sure.

  • The PSFC gazette ad is going in this week

  • A few specialized skills people from PSFC can work for us--but it’s limited

  • We’re hoping that the members can step up to their desire to keep the coop open with their time and labor; creating sense of ownership; create a culture of labor value;

  • Continuing discussion needed to effectively change the culture so members understand member ownership/labor value/cooperation: Chris could send a personal letter to members with this message; include the link to sign up for shifts


  • Membership:  JUST READ since it’s a need to take up time talking about it at the mtg unless there’s questions.
    Committee chair Renée Bergan, Liaison Cecile Arnaud

    • Communications: With the SC’s now gone, Membership has taken over the “weekly” at least for the next few weeks (started today).  FYI Will need help from someone for most of May while I’m out of town.  Asked Devon or Lindsay if they could help since it’s mostly member work related, they can work with someone on Marketing.

    • Updating in store work Schedule: We are in the process of updating the member in store work schedule for the re-opening to be as follows.

      • Monday - Thursday, 2:30 - 5 & 4:45-7:15: cashier only, 7-9:30: all 3 done by members = 20

      • Friday, 8-10:30: 1 receiver, 10:15-12:45: 1 receiver, 12:30-3: 1 receiver; 2:30 - 5: cashier only, 445-7:15: all 3 done by members; 7-9:30: all 3 done by members  = 10

      • Saturday/Sunday, same as now (all shifts done by members) = 24


      • Total = 54 shifts per week/216 per month. Previous was 71 shifts per week/284 per month so we’d eliminate 17 shifts per week/68 shifts per month. Since we have roughly 315 active members of which about 80 are on the board and committees, if EVERYONE did a recurring shift, we’d be set. But that’s not the reality. We’re working on getting 80% of our store workers to do recurring shifts. Still having at least 350 - 400 active members would help alleviate our labor concerns. Hoping new location will help with that. Already feels like a buzz on Fulton :)

      • We aim to have this done by May 1 and then communicate with members that they must sign up for a recurring shift.  We will allow floaters only in extreme cases so that we can fill these shifts. Our language and emphasis will be on owner responsibility and that without that we’ll end up right where we are now, so emphasizing that it’s the members responsibility to make sure their biz is running properly. I’ve started this now with the labor shouts outs.

    • In store signage:  Lindsay project.  Emphasizing worker responsibility throughout store.

    • Membership campaign

      • In process:

        • Activating IGG donation members to build our workforce, roughly 25 new members!

        • Continuing to push IGG membership via emails, SM and website till store opens

      • May:

        • INreach! We’ll contact deactivated and GL members, reminding them of the new location and offer clean slate to those that need it to entice them to come back

        • Zucchini and Trial members: We’ll also reach out to all past (and current) Trial and Z’s to share the news and see if they want to join.

      • June: after store opens we’ll focus on getting new members, so ppl can see what we’re like first and avoid any investment redemption requests. (Outreach doing more work in May about store presence in the hood). Will focus on the following this summer

        • Pushing one month trial

        • Summer special where ppl that pay in full (avocado or lettuce plans) get their admin fee waived (i.e. $25 off). This will end after Labor Day

    • **Still need to to: Develop a new system for make ups, trades and floaters (decreasing floaters substantially and pushing for more recurring shift coverage). Will require 1-2 ppl to manage this regularly. This will free up the GM’s time a lot.

      • On that note, we’re going to push that members clock in their hours themselves at the store via a store computer that is set up under the GM”s account. They will do the “add clock time” to hopefully avoid a lot of issues. There will be some bumps and grinds at first but after a few months, ppl get into the habit, with the help of the GM and SL’s reminding folks and with store signage. Putting this responsibility on our members is one more step towards membership ownership of the store.

    • PHEW!  I think that’s it!


  • IT:
    Committee chair Misha Avrekh, Liaison Cecile Arnaud


  • Cecile tried to contact Misha via email; not getting responses; need keys to have someone take over part of IT; Mattias (former chair) may have some info and facilitate getting info to Chad

  • We have keys to some of the software;

  • How best to handle the situation? Alleviate him of the chairship--and administrative duties--but recommend he continues with the systems he has ownership of.

  • Backing things up and changing root passwords are what we can do

  • Maybe Mattias can broker/moderate a meeting with Misha to discuss IT committee health; Chris may be able to offer helping/communicating hand


  • Governance:
    Committee chair Amanda , Liaison Matthew Talmage

    • I'd like help updating the member manual with updated information, so that we can focus on needed improvements

      • Need to update language on IGG and donated memberships before new store opens

      • confirm with membership as to current membership policies that will be enforced


  • Operations/Build Out:
    Committee chair Elizabeth Agee, Liaison Matthew Talmage


  • HR:
    Committee chair Hannah GW, Liaison Matthew Talmage


4. Finance at Our New Location

The purpose of this agenda item will look at various ways to achieve financial success at the new store. This session will focus on target numbers. We will eventually be looking at operational efficiencies to achieve these numbers, but this will not be the focus tonight.

  • We will look at the past 6 months of operations at the store, focusing on sales, cost of goods sold, margin, effective margin, markup, fixed expenses and our profit/loss.

  • We will then explore several scenarios that will allow us to be profitable and provide a recommendation for the best way to be financially viable.

  • Considering the price comparison presentation, we need to be sensitive as to how we establish the markup, but if complicated how can we tell, upon reviw, if the markup is effective? Inventory is a huge piece of the puzzle;

  • Concern with variable markup is labor cost to keep track of all variations; category pricing can keep it less complicated;

  • Inventory management will stop the gaps; we shall sell better not just more;

  • Merch will make a proposal with the best way to handle the markup;




5. Committee Asks and Gives  9:05- 9:20 (15 min) (Committee Chairs and Liaisons)

Committees asks for help or support / others give below:

  • The Board would like suggestions as to a place to hold the next few meetings: We can keep meeting at 18 Putnam through May 15

  • Membership wants a vote of approval from the board to increase the parental leave from 3 months per parent to 6 months per parent. VOTE all in favor.

  • IGG team wants a vote from Board to allow Memberships which were bought on IGG but not being used by the purchasers, to be allowed to be “donated” to other by being auctioned or raffled off at the FUNdraiser--with the approval of the original donor.  The recipients will still be paying for the donated membership by bidding on them, just may not be the full $150 - but remember, this particular membership investment will stay with the Co-op when that person leaves. VOTE: board voted in favor unanimously

  • Who is going to take care of the job posting for General Manager? : We’re asking Hannah

  • Cecile might have some places to store the butter we have left


6. AGENDA - free flowing and aspirational discussions

  • DK: idea for board letter to members: members need to be up on hours; help us walk into the new place ready to go;  


Closing  9:20- 9:23 (5 min) Board reviews votes at the end of each Meeting


Reports in writing:


Membership and Finance Report


  • Monthly membership report (link)

Summary of report:

Current number of working members: ________

Number of new members and deactivated in November: __ new members,  

__ reactivated member, __ trial members

Number of existing members waiting for investment returns: _________

We’ve seen roughly a ___% increase in membership since January.


  • Monthly finance report  (link)

            Summary of report:



(current month 2017)

(previous month 2017)

(current month 2016)





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