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Reaching Consensus. What is Consensus Consensus is a decision in which all group members find a common ground. Getting consensus does not mean that everyone.

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Presentation on theme: "Reaching Consensus. What is Consensus Consensus is a decision in which all group members find a common ground. Getting consensus does not mean that everyone."— Presentation transcript:

1 Reaching Consensus

2 What is Consensus Consensus is a decision in which all group members find a common ground. Getting consensus does not mean that everyone is completely satisfied with the outcome or that it was the first choice. The search for the best decision through the exploration of the best of everyone’s thinking. Consensus does not mean: – A unanimous vote – Everyone getting everything they want – Everyone coming around to the “right” option Office of Family Services 2

3 Consensus Consensus does mean: – Everyone understands the decision and can explain why it is best. – Everyone can live with the decision. Consensus requires: – Time – Active participation of all members – Creative thinking and open-mindedness – Skills in communication, listening, conflict resolution, and facilitation. Office of Family Services 3

4 Tips for Reaching Consensus Listen carefully. Encourage everyone to participate. Seek out differences of opinion. Search for alternatives that meet the goals of everyone. Avoid changing your mind just to avoid conflict. Don’t just argue for your point of view. Balance power. Make sure there is enough time. Check for understanding. Office of Family Services 4

5 Building Consensus Fist-to-Five is an easy way for people to be honest regarding their degree of support for an initiative. It gives your team important feedback about whether or not to move ahead with a proposed idea. Office of Family Services 5

6 Fist-to-Five What do the hands mean? – Fist: No support, will work to block proposal – 1 Finger: No support, will not block proposal – 2 Fingers: Minimal support, willing to work for proposal – 3 Fingers: Neutral – 4 Fingers: Solid support, clear intent to work for proposal – 5 Fingers: Strong support, willing to lead proposal Office of Family Services 6

7 Fist-to-Five Process When a proposal or idea has been presented to the group, ask each team member to hold up 0 – 5 fingers. Have one of the group members count how many people have five, four, and three fingers showing. If there are all fives, fours, and threes consensus has been reached. Office of Family Services 7

8 Fist-to-Five Process If someone holds up fewer than three fingers, they should be given the opportunity to state their objections and the team should address their concerns. Sometimes these people raise important concerns that have not yet been considered by the group. Teams can continue the Fist-to-Five process until they achieve consensus (a minimum of three fingers or higher) or determine they must move on to the next issue. Office of Family Services 8

9 Learning to Build Consensus Meeting Protocols Activity – Using the Fist to Five process, have your faculty and staff develop meeting protocols. – This activity will accomplish two objectives: Faculty and staff will learn how to come to consensus. Faculty and staff will come to an agreement on meeting protocols which will allow for more productive meetings. Office of Family Services 9

10 Activity: Developing Meeting Protocols Think – Pair – Share – As an individual, think of some things (participant behaviors, presenter shortcomings, etc.) that really annoy you during meetings. – Pair up with the person next to you and share your stories. – Between the two of you, decide what is the most annoying thing. Office of Family Services 10

11 Activity: Developing Meeting Protocols Re-phrase your negative statement into a positive proactive statement. – Ex: Sidebar conversations annoy me. – We will not engage in sidebar conversations. Share with another pair at your table. Between the four of you, decide what protocol you would like to see most. Each table shares their meeting protocol. As a staff, come to consensus using the Fist-to-Five on the meeting protocols. Office of Family Services 11


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