introducing cooperative principles


  • Explain what makes cooperative businesses different than other businesses
  • Make participants think about business activities that could be run through a cooperative form


Explanation at the board + 1 short video projection (if you speak Greek, check this video or this one if you speak Danish) + 2 group exercises + 1 podcast to listen to outside the workshop


  • How is a coop different than other businesses? Click here to get an idea (EN) or here (FR)
  • What is the mission of your coop?
  • Who will be your clients and why? See if this video might help with this question (DN)
  • Who will be your members and why?
  • Why is your coop needed in your local context?
  • How is your coop innovative?
  • Why will your coop be relevant to young people? Check out this video to see if it might be useful for this question (FR)


  1. Have everyone sit in circle + Set out a whiteboard with markers, ask circle to provide definition of coop, write out key words on board + Write out definition of coop + Fill out table on pg. 9 of MGT all together + show short video about cooperative principles (click here for NRECA video and here for CoopUK video)
  2. Divide group into smaller 3-persons groups + Have them pick a business idea to develop into a cooperative + Provide and explain Key Questions + Have them present their coop to the bigger group (refer to MGT Step 1 Identifying needs pg. 17) + have everyone vote on best coop idea + give out first prize to the winning group (star made of coloured paper)
  3. Keep the 3-persons group + give instructions for the next exercise, i.e.: create a 5 minute pitch about raising members of your new coop, the pitch should explain the coop, provide an identikit of the member + define where and how you could give your pitch out + have them give the pitch to the bigger group (refer to MGT Motivating and including members pg.18) + have them listen to Startup podcast 5 episodes as homework


  • 5 minutes brainstorming + 10 minutes explanation
  • 10 minutes to explain key questions + 20 minutes for group work + 5 minutes each group to present their coop to the bigger group + 10 minutes voting and awards + 10 minutes general feedback from ambassador

BREAK (10 minutes)

  • 10 minutes to provide instructions for pitch creation + 30 minutes for group work + 5 minutes each group to give out pitch + 10 minutes general feedback from ambassador


  1. Participants understand the cooperative principles and peculiarity of the business
  2. Participants understand how a coop could function in the market
  3. Participants understand the key role people play in coops
  4. Participants are ready to delve into business planning


  • 1 whiteboard + markers + large sheets of paper
  • Sheets of coloured paper + scissors + tape
  • Tables or mats to carry out group work
  • Video player of some sort to show short video
  • Mobile phone to show how to use podcasts