Dear Los Alamos Residents and Co+op Market Members,
I thought a quick note to our community might be very helpful given some of the recent issues our Co+op Market is experiencing. You may not know that the Co+op Market is struggling financially.
Smith’s has hurt some of the small businesses in town including the Co+op and there have been numerous leadership and staff changes in the last 12 months. The unexpected death in November of the recently hired general manager has also had a significant effect on staff morale and created uncertainty at a very difficult time.
There are several operational challenges that the staff are working on but the big idea is that revenue is down 20 percent and cutting expenses 20 percent is not a realistic short or long term option.
The Co+op needs to increase revenue.
So why my letter to you? Our community Co+op is struggling and if we value it we should take steps to help. If we want it to survive and ultimately prosper we need to participate in a few small ways.
What can we do about it?
- Join or Renew Early: If you’re a member consider renewing to help with cash flow. If you’re not a member, please consider joining.
- Buy Stuff: Please consider eating at the Co+op more often and shifting some of your grocery dollars to the Co+op. In our family we’ve tried to double our visits to the Co+op vs. shopping Smith’s or Santa Fe. By the way, the new Deli Manager Chris is doing a great job and Sunday brunch is very good and healthy!
- Be Flexible: Please recognize that a lot is going on and the staff is doing the best they can with all the changes. If they don’t have the bread you like buy the other brand, etc.
- Contribute: The Co+op had to change their volunteer discount program but they still need help. Since we own the place let’s help out where we can. Even if you’re not a formal volunteer you can wipe down a table or replace the napkins, etc. You can apply for the board.
- Encourage: Tell the staff and board members you appreciate them. Love on them a little bit and let them know how important they are. They are the heart and soul of the market and need encouragement.
- Comment: Give feedback on things we can do to improve and ultimately prosper. It may not happen right away but it’s helpful to get good ideas into the mix.
We all value the Co+op for different reasons. I find it helpful to remember that the Co+op is our community market and not just a business. Yes there are a few things that can be improved but they won’t matter if the Co+op goes away. I appreciate you taking a moment to read this and I hope you decide to contribute in some small way to make our Co+op more amazing. Thank you.