Simple Democratic Decision Making Process
(Wait, why no blocks?)
- We should move forward as a group when we've given
appropriate time to hear any concerns, discuss the concerns, and
we're all comfortable moving forward.
- It should be democratic, flexible, easy-to-understand, simple
- Ideally could be used by anyone without previous experience
- Read proposal (ideally written)
- Clarifying questions about the proposal?
- Time for discussion as appropriate
- Any concerns with the proposal?
- If none, then can we verify with a visible indication that we
all agree to move forward with this proposal as written?
If there are concerns:
- list them out and address and try to resolve them as a group
one at a time modifying the proposal as necessary. Once they are
resolved re-read the modified proposal (step 4 above).
If the concerns cannot be resolved in the time given:
- Resolve it outside the meeting: There are many
outside the meeting options including, waiting to decide until a
future meeting, gathering more information, delegating a small team
to try to resolve the concerns, sleep on it, etc.
- Record the concern and move forward: Another option
is to record the unresolved concern as part of the notes from the
decision and moving forward. The group should pay attention to
that unresolved concern and learn from the experience. You can put
it on the agenda for a future meeting to review how it went or try
to address the concern again without preventing action. This is
similar to a stand-aside in consensus process.
- Do nothing. This makes more sense if you think of it
as "well, we don't have agreement yet, so we can't take collective
action." Most people who use processes similar to consensus rarely find
they are unable to reach agreement.