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Counter Courtesy (clip)

Co-operative Society training film

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A training film for employees of the Co-op on how to present themselves, how to deal with different types of customer and how to learn about the trade. In this clip, we visit the food department. The film gives helpful advice on how to provide better and quicker service, how to keep the department well stocked and how to deal with potentially difficult customers.

Questions & Activities


  • How does this Co-op store differ from modern supermarkets?
  • Find out who this film was made for and who funded its production.
  • Is there any advice being given to the workers in the film which you feel is missing in today'€™s shops?
  • Would you want to work in the Co-op if it operated like this? Why or why not?
  • If we could only source food from Scotland, what products could you get and what would you miss the most?


Create a presentation on how the Co-operative Movement was established and what elements still exist today.

Study the concept of Fairtrade. Create a design and stock list for a shop selling Fairtrade products.

Compare the range of products and geographical locations of food available at the time this film was made compared to today. Report your findings visually.

The Co-operatives were community businesses serving local customers. Do you think there should be more support for community based small businesses today? Hold a debate.

Create a role play in pairs between a complaining customer and shopkeeper. Try out a number of different outcomes.

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-000-105-C
Resource Rights Holder By kind permission of The Co-operative Group Limited
Project Ref 0606
Date 1947
Genre Corporate, Training
School Subject Drama, Enterprise, Geography, Social Studies, Mathematics
Subject Matter Training, Shops, Food
Who Co-operative Wholesale Society Ltd (sponsor), Germain Burger (director), Orion Picture Corporation (production company)
Where Scotland
Event Working life
Attributes Black and White, Sound
Clip Length 4:10
Film Length 19:00