The ideals or principles of co operation have developed over a number of years. They have been the result of practical experience and success as against other system of reforms like syndicalism, communism etc. Whose theories were first formulated by master minds before put up into practice and adopted. These principles are as follows.
1) A voluntary Association:
In the first place it is purely a voluntary association. Admission to a co operative society is purely voluntary. Any person who feels the need of joining a co operative society and enjoying its benefits becomes its member whenever he like. On the other hand, he may also quite membership on his own accord.
2) Democratic spirit:
The co operative Society is managed by the members themselves either directly or through their own elected representatives. Decisions are take in a meeting in which every member has the right to express himself.
The co-operative Society is guided by the principle of equality. Every member has one vote irrespective of his of her share in the business of the society.
4) Self help:
The basis of co-operation is self-help. It is based on the recognition that man develop only through his own efforts. Therefore he must stand on this own leg. It accepts outside help only as an aid to his own efforts.
5) Justice for all:
While co-operation stands for the benefits of its members, it believes in justice to all. It does not believe in exploitation or benefits at the cost of others. It aims to ensure every one his due.
6) Service above profit:
The Primary Aim of co-operation is to give service to its members. It aims at profit any to the extent that is necessary as a business organisation. Any extra profit is redistributed to its members in the form of dividend, bonus and rebate.
7) To meet the economic Requirement of its members:
A co-operative Society is a business institution with objective of meeting the economic requirements of its members. It, therefore works on business principles. It is thus neither a charitable organisation nor a mere service institution.
8) To obtain the Material Advantage:
Elucidating the principles of co-operation the Maclagon committee has observed that the principles of co-operation in short is that a single and powerless persons with the help of the other persons, may reap those material advantages that are available to the rich and powerful persons. Unity, Economic Development, Equity, Freedom, Sympathy, Service, Economy and Reliance are the main principles of co-operating.