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Consensus at the core

Good Group Tips

In principle, when there is a core consensus — things that everyone in an organization understands and agrees to — we are more apt to let committees and individuals throughout the organization make decisions by means other than consensus. Managers and workers are trusted to make swift individual and small group decisions on a day-to-day basis because they understand and believe in the organization’s core mission and values. When we know we agree on the basics, we trust each other on the details.

Practical tip: Know and shape the core consensus of your group. Make sure you understand your group’s mission and values and work to improve them. When staff and committees hold the same values as you, trust their findings and recommendations. Trust individuals and teams throughout the organization to make decisions on your behalf.

– Craig Freshley

Click here for one-page PDF of this Tip, a great way to print or share.

3 thoughts on “Consensus at the core

  1. I understand what is being said here. I don’t think the first writer read it correctly. While supervisors and managers are usually the ultimate decision deciders, it is good to trust your staff to make swift day to day decisions, if they are working from the same mission values. Sometimes decisions need to be made in the moment, when there is no time to check with a supervisor. I remember reading an article written by a very successful boat maker who said part of his success was to hire quality people and let them do their thing or their part.

  2. While I love the simplicity of this Tip the meaning of consensus seems to be the larger issue. Ready to comment I checked your Tip List & lo & behold your very first one addressed that very well.
    I’ve attended a number of meetings in which the leader will declare “consensus reached” when in fact some participants are simply ignored or cowed into submission.

  3. Work for an organization with strong stated mission and values, but low trust in others decision making and strong consensus culture. does this mean the stated values are different than the actual values? Low trust in decisions that one is not part of is very frustrating and leads to a lot of rework!

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