In a healthy co-op, the members choose the board and the board chooses the CEO. When the board chooses everyone who is allowed to stand on the ballot for the board, we’ve lost the chain of accountability.
What do people think of this? If a petition was brought forward to roll back some of the changes that allow the Board unlimited power to set criteria for which candidates are allowed to sit on the ballot, would you sign it?
What do I think of this? First, I agree with Seventy's premise.
For some time I have been concerned about MEC's governance practices.
I know that when I arrived in Vancouver in 1990, alone, and wanted to explore the local hills, I learned how from the guidebooks, and I learned about the gear I needed from the wise and informed people at MEC. MEC's carefully chosen catalogue guided me to make purchases for circumstances I didn't fully understand at the time, and make choices that, in hindsight, were the right ones for my experience, my future skill development, and my limited resources.
Today, I see MEC acting like a retail store — seeking product lines and colours that they hope will appeal to the buyers. The service is still exemplary, but the fact that MEC sells it does not mean that it is the best value for the purpose. I suspect that they measure their success by how much product they move, and not whether or not the members are well served. Actually, I'd be curious to learn about the metrics that MEC considers valuable.
I also know that I might be out-of-step with the current members. As an urban store, maybe the membership now expects MEC to act like any fashion store.
My point in this ramble is that while I agree that I don't approve of MEC's board practices, I've not decided that I know enough to participate in any form of member-action against the board. Even if I did, I suspect that a petition would not be effective unless it also included a PR
campaign to inform and motivate enough of the membership to be effective in causing change. I am really slow to add my name to a petition unless I've fully researched the cause. Nowadays, an action like signing a petition can become part of the signer's legacy forever.
I will be interested to read the extent that other people on Clubtread care about this issue.
And it might be helpful if one or more of the MEC board members who support the current governance practices would participate in the discussion.