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Building Consensus

Building consensus in a co-operative business can be important for its sustainability, especially in the early…

Business Model Comparison

The co-operative business model combines the best of small business ownership and a corporation. It often…

Focusing Ideas

When forming a co-operative, there are often more people to work with and more ideas to…

Hosting a Meeting

Hosting a meeting can be a daunting task. But early meetings are key to a successful…

Choosing a Co-op Type

Choosing a co-op type is an important step in developing a co-op. Co-operative businesses use a…

Shareholders and Governance in Co-operatives

The foundation for any co-operative is its shareholders (often called “members”). Shareholders can support their co-op…

Transitioning a business to a co-operative

Many business owners who are thinking about retirement want to make a succession plan. CIBC estimates…

Guide to writing Bylaws in Saskatchewan

What are bylaws? Bylaws are the rules and regulations that govern various aspects of a co-operative…

Guide to Writing Articles of Incorporation

To incorporate a co-op, you will need to submit documents called “Articles of Incorporation” to the…

Incorporation Checklist

If you’re ready to incorporate your co-op, congrats! You’ve already put in a lot of the…

Shaping your Co-operative’s Identity

Building a co-operative requires a lot of planning and development of documents, policies, and procedures. These…

Sample Bylaws for Saskatchewan

Disclaimer: These bylaws were created by Co-operatives First staff and should not be used for any…

Allocating Surplus in a Co-operative Business

Surplus is a term commonly used by co-operatives to describe a business’s profit. Many co-ops create…

Co-operative Business Planning Guide

If you’re starting a new business, it’s important to clearly define and articulate your plans: what…

Business Planning Pitch Practice

One of the big challenges co-operatives have in their developing stages is selling the idea of…

Roles and Responsibilities

The role you play in a co-op depends on how you choose to be connected to…

Budgeting and Co-operatives

Budgeting is one of the most important things a co-operative business can do. It allows the…

Financing your Co-operative Business

Raising the funds you need to start a new business isn’t easy. If you want to…

Guide to Writing a Financial Plan

Having a financial plan is important whether you’re in the business planning stage, or your business…

Ongoing Capitalization

Raising financial capital is an important step when developing a co-operative business, and it remains a…

Tax Treatment of Co-operative Businesses

Now for everyone’s favourite topic: taxes! No? Alright, while they may not be fun, they are…

Annual Meetings and Co-operatives

An annual general meeting (AGM) allows a co-operative’s members to come together, discuss their co-op, make…

Being a Board Member in a Co-operative Business

The board of directors is central to the operations of a co-operative business. The board is…

Board Decision-Making Exercise

The board of directors is central to the operations of a co-operative business. The board is…

Board Member Recruitment

Recruiting board members is essential for co-ops. It is important to make sure that you not…

Board of Directors Evaluation

The board of directors is central in a co-operative business. The directors need to be able…

Creating a Conflict of Interest Policy

Every co-op should have a conflict of interest policy as part of its bylaws or policy…

Filing your Annual Return

One of the most important requirements for co-operatives is filing an annual return. An annual return…

Guidelines for co-operative elections

A co-op’s board of directors is elected each year at its annual general meeting (AGM). Here’s…

Sample Manager Job Description

This sample job description is not the property of any business, rather includes information commonly found…

Co-operatives First

Providing co-op development services to the four western provinces, Co-operatives First has the supports, resources, and…

Futurepreneur Canada’s Cash Flow Template

The Futurpreneur Canada Cash Flow Template is here to help you outline your start up costs,…

Futurpreneur’s general tools, tips, and resources for entrepreneurs

Explore Futurpreneur’s resources by topic for both entrepreneur’s and mentors.

Community Futures Network

The Community Futures network consists of over 268 local non-profits across rural Canada that provides development…

Guide to building an Opportunity Development Co-operative

The Alberta Community and Co-operative Association works for the development and promotion of co-operatives across Alberta….

BDC’s entrepreneur toolkit

To succeed today you need to have sound business sense and a set of practical tools….

BDC’s financial planning tool

Is your financial management sound? Does it include regular financial planning and budgeting? Is the full…

Provincial Business Development Centres

Funded by Western Economic Diversification, the four business information centres in each province provide a variety…

Provincial Co-operative Associations

The provincial co-operative associations are coalitions of co-operatives in their respective provinces that work towards improving…

Western Economic Diversification

Western Economic Diversification (WED) is a government department that falls under the Ministry of Innovation, Science…

Big Co-operatives

Co-operatives often look for opportunities to invest in the communities they serve through business advice, grants,…

Why incorporate? (video)

Incorporating a business is the process of creating a legally recognized entity separate from any one…

Debt vs Equity (video)

Financing a business is challenging at the best of times. Understanding the benefits of using debt…

Choosing a name (video)

Here’s a few things to keep in mind when going through the naming process. You may…

Why create a business plan? (video)

If you’re starting a new business, it’s important to clearly define and articulate your plans: what…

Articles & bylaws (video)

If you’re thinking of building your business as a co-op, you’ll need to go through the…

Online Governance Course

Learn how to successfully govern a co-operative Take our FREE online governance course. For a co-op…

Incorporation time frame

Understanding the incorporation time frame is important. When you incorporate a co-operative, steps need to be…

A Guide to writing bylaws in Alberta

Below is a guide to writing bylaws in Alberta. Writing bylaws is an important step in…

Sample Bylaws for Alberta

Designed for those starting co-ops in Alberta, these sample bylaws can help Alberta co-ops navigate the…

A Guide to writing Rules of Association in BC

What are the Rules of Association? Rules of Association (or bylaws) are the rules and regulations…

Sample Bylaws for Manitoba

The Government of Manitoba through the Financial Institutions Regulation Branch provides several sets of sample bylaws…

Sample Rules of Association for British Columbia

In British Columbia, bylaws are called Rules of Association and are filed with the Memorandum of…

A Guide to writing bylaws in Manitoba

Below is a guide to writing bylaws in Manitoba. Writing bylaws is an important step in the process…

Incorporating in Saskatchewan

To incorporate a co-operative in Saskatchewan, download and fill out the PDF included on this page….

Creating a Human Resources Policy

A human resources policy is a guiding document that a co-operative will use to manage its…

Creating a Strategic Plan

This tool is intended to guide co-op boards or members through the process of creating a…

Creating a Terms of Reference

A Terms of Reference is a document that provides clarity for a decision-making body and the…

Member Onboarding and Engagement

Members are the foundation for any co-operative and new membership is vital to the ongoing well-being…

Sample Financial Policy

Sample Financial Policy Sample Co-operative Limited Date Approved Purpose This financial policy shall serve as a…

Sample Membership Agreement

Sample Membership Agreement This agreement outlines the rights and responsibilities of an individual that has purchased…

Sample Resolution

Decision-making in co-operative businesses is regulated by provincial and federal governments. Certain decisions a co-operative and…

Sample Terms of Reference

Terms of Reference for the Co-operative’s Board Approved Date Introduction The Co-operative is governed by the…

Guide to starting a renewable energy co-op

Thinking about starting a renewable energy co-op? Download this great toolkit from the Solar Energy Service…

Workplan for incorporating federally

Designed for steering committees and boards of co-operatives pursuing federal incorporation, this plan can help coordinate…

Government of Canada Information Guide on Co-operatives

The Federal government maintains an information guide on co-operatives and key legislative provisions from each provincial…

Workplan for incorporating in Manitoba

Designed for steering committees and boards of co-operatives developing in Manitoba, this plan can help coordinate…

Sample Bylaws for a Federal Co-op

Disclaimer: These bylaws were created by Co-operatives First staff and should not be used for any organization…

Filing Articles of Incorporation in Alberta

To begin filling in your articles of incorporation in Alberta, please download the PDF or visit…

Workplan for incorporating in British Columbia

Designed for steering committees and boards of co-operatives developing in British Columbia, this plan can help…

Workplan for incorporating in Alberta

Designed for steering committees and boards of co-operatives developing in Alberta, this plan can help coordinate…

Incorporating in Manitoba

To incorporate a co-operative in Manitoba, download the guide supplied here and use the forms provided…

Co-ops and charitable status

Charitable status is a legal designation granted by the federal government to organizations that apply and…

Provincial comparison

By province, here’s a snapshot of the differences and similarities of incorporating a co-op in western…

Workplan for incorporating in Saskatchewan

This workplan is designed for steering committees and boards of co-operatives developing in Saskatchewan. This plan…

Filing a Memorandum of Association

Incorporating in British Columbia is a bit of a process. So use the three documents on…

Guide to Federal Bylaws

Completing a co-operative’s bylaws are an important step in the incorporation process. They are the rules…

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