top of page

New 2021-2022 Dates TBA

Pre COVID-19, we were set to present this new format in Apr. 2020.

We can't wait for it to be safe to gather and work with you again!

Natural Foods Leadership Development Training

Rising Stars Seminars

3 New





We’ve redeveloped content in every one of our popular and innovative topics to offer a series of shorter-formatted events to better accommodate your training needs -- and your budget.

4/27/20 • Minneapolis

Ready To Rise


a 1-day seminar

for everyone

with a focus on staff

with leadership potential

4/28-4/29 • Minneapolis

Eager & Experienced Seminar

a 2-day seminar

for all leaders

with a focus on department managers

4/30-5/1 • Minneapolis

Management Mastery Seminar

a 2-day seminar

for experienced leaders

Ready To Rise Seminar

A 1-day seminar for everyone, with a focus on staff with leadership potential

Apr. 27, 2020

9:00 am - 5:00 pm


Embassy Suites

2800 American Blvd W, Bloomington, MN 55431

$595, Early registration

through 3/21/20

$695, Regular registration

Cultivating Your Curiosity & Passion for Work: Enhance your connection with what you love about your work, rediscover your capacity for playing while working, and inspire others with your enthusiasm..


Basic Financials: Master entry-level financials and revitalize your weekly OBM huddles, so you can understand and play a personal role in your store’s or department’s financial success.


Sampling for Success: Involve everyone in increasing sales through sampling, cross-merchandising and display ideas.


Emotionally Intelligent Customer Service: Practice and develop the five skills of emotional intelligence — self-awareness, self- regulation, self-motivation, empathy and social skill — to deliver outstanding customer service.

Burnout & Renewal: Identify the signs of burnout, and learn tools to practice self-care for a sustainable career in your workplace.

Eager & Experienced Seminar

A 2-day seminar for all leaders, with a focus on department managers

Apr. 28 - 29, 2020

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Includes optional

evening reception

Apr. 28, 5:00 - 7:00 pm


Embassy Suites

2800 American Blvd W, Bloomington, MN 55431

$995, Early registration

through 3/21/20

$1095, Regular registration

The Compass Game: Understand your personal management style and how it interacts with others’.

Training That Works: Create conditions for optimum learning and use techniques for training right the first time.


Develop Your People, Level I: Grow your people’s skills and move tasks off your platter, freeing your focus for the most important parts of your job.


Playing by the Numbers: Sales, Margin & Labor: Understand the basics of department financial statements and revitalize your weekly OBM huddles by showing staff members how they can make a difference.


Grow a Culture of Accountability: Practice skills and increase your confidence in handling each stage of progressive corrective action, from verbal feedback to coaching to written warnings to termination.


Daily Huddles: Learn an effective two-way communications tool for keeping all members of a team informed and giving them input on decisions that affect their work.


Develop Your Emotional Intelligence: Practice and develop the five skills of emotional intelligence — self-awareness, self- regulation, self-motivation, empathy and social skill — to be a better supervisor and grow the emotional intelligence of your staff.

Management Mastery Seminar

A 2-day seminar for experienced leaders

Apr. 30 - May 1, 2020

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Includes optional

evening reception

Apr. 30, 5:00 - 7:00 pm


Embassy Suites

2800 American Blvd W, Bloomington, MN 55431

$995, Early registration

through 3/21/20

$1095, Regular registration

Teamwork on the Leadership Team: Forge your managers into a genuine, high-performing team with complementary skills, agreed-upon operating rules and mutual accountability.


Meetings That Make Things Happen: Acquire insights and tools to make leadership team and department meetings engaging, productive and efficient.


Staffing for Success: Motivational fit is the degree of alignment between what a person seeks in a job and what the job is actually like. Improve staff retention by learning how to tell if applicants have motivational fit with the job.


Conflict Resolution: Pick up tools for resolving workplace conflicts and building better work relationships between coworkers and between supervisors and employees.


Cull your Bad Apples: Staff who bring down more than build your department culture can destroy a team’s productivity and cooperation. Timely management intervention can help you cull or compost your department of bad apples and help your department thrive.


Develop Your People, Level II: Strategize to retain and prepare your high performers for promotion by conducting stay interviews and performance evaluations that inspire.


Managing Up: Build a better relationship with your own boss and learn how to effectively make your case.


Investing in Projects to Grow Sales: Learn how to effectively propose investing in equipment and labor to increase department


Mastering Middle Management: Find solutions to the challenges of being “in the middle” of the organizational structure by sharing your unique perspectives with integrity

The Rising Stars Training Experience

We use a variety of dynamic teaching formats and differing lead speakers to create vibrant presentations that'll keep you engaged.


Every seminar topic is comprised of several segments that include:


Presenters with Slide Show Content

We bring three very different voices and in any given hour you’re likely to hear from all three of us. Switching up the speaker is just one way we help keep your interest.

Small Group and Individual Work Projects

Some exercises involve self-reflection and you’ll work on these independently to respect your privacy. More commonly, we’ll break into smaller work groups so you can develop, converse, rehearse or complete a creative assignment.

Presenter Role-Plays

We present role plays as content-related models of (typically) good leadership. They’re the right blend of serious and funny, allow everyone to relate to the content and serve as a jumping off point for conversations and small group work. Some roles are available for interested participants but no one is ever required to speak in front of the group (except to briefly introduce yourself).

Work Games

Our seminars feature uniquely creative work games to give you experiential insight and fun with the content. People do get competitive, but you don’t have to.

Who Are These Seminar For?

Co-op and Independent Natural Foods Grocers

Available Lodging at Our Hotel

Special group rate lodging at our seminar hotel. Reserve on your own with our event code.

IMG_8982 copy.JPG
Workbook & Digital Documents

Your workbook is packed with key systems, forms and documents, and a year of access to download dozens of digital documents.

Evening Reception

Network with colleagues to share ideas and best practices with beer, wine and light appetizers.

On the first night of our 2-day seminars only.

Organic Lunches & Snacks Galore

You'll enjoy delicious catering from a nearby natural foods store.

We cheerfully arrange and cater to every imaginable special diet.

Optional Store Tour

Hop our charter to visit

nearby natural foods stores.

Extra charge, includes gift card for dinner. Offered

on the second night of our 2-day seminars only.

Seminar Presenters


We’re The Rising Stars Leadership Group –– Allen Seidner, Carolee Colter and Mark Mulcahy (left to right). We’ve each spent pretty much our entire working lives in the organic and natural foods business. And, obviously, we’re not kids anymore, so that’s a lot of years!

We’ve been owners, leaders and staff –– with specialties in human resources, produce and prepared foods. We’ve worked in co-ops, independents, a wholesale warehouse, and for publicly held heavyweights. We’ve had bosses and we’ve been bosses. We’ve had staff and customers too, of course. Now, and for the past couple decades each, we’ve been consultants, to hundreds of great co-ops and independently owned businesses.


We’ve worked together creating and presenting Rising Stars Seminars, more than three score of them, since 1999. We love doing every single one of them, and that we get to work with the next generation of natural foods leaders. We see our opportunity to present seminars as a precious privilege, and we’ll hope you join us soon.

Carolee Colter
Human Resources & Staff Training Specialist

Carolee specializes in personnel management and organizational development for the natural foods industry. With the involvement of managers and employees, she conducts employee surveys and develops staffing plans, job descriptions, pay scales, performance evaluations, personnel policies and training programs.

More Info

Mark Mulcahy
Produce & Staff Training Specialist

Mark is an award winning retail consultant, educator, and organic advocate. With more than 35 years in the organic produce industry, Mark is well known for his creative merchandising, effective training techniques, passion for produce, successful financial strategies and dedication to sustainable agriculture.

More Info

3-IMG_E7204 copy.JPG
Allen Seidner 

Prepared Food Design & Operations Specialist 

Thought For Food Consulting

Allen specializes in prepared foods development and has designed program, financial and fixture plans for hundreds of natural foods co-ops and independents. Since 1993 he's led high-performing teams at Good Earth Natural Foods, Whole Foods Market and Wild Oats Market, and is the producer and presenter of DeliOps 101.


More Info

bottom of page