|Enforcing group agreements||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Rob Sandelin (Exchange) (RobsanExchange.MICROSOFT.com)|
|Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 12:50:29 -0500|
Mel asked >- How >many people before you have to have "police" of some sort, making sure that >rules are followed? > >Probably about 2. As soon as rules get flagrantly violated or something >important gets ignored. It doesn't matter how many people there are >altogether, what matters is that things you agreed to are not being done and >so you need to deal with it. If 100 all agree to cut their hair on Sunday, >and 1 person does not, then the group should deal with it. In my experience, >if you do not deal with broken agreements right away and right up front, then >you effectively have NO agreement. You can make choices not to follow an >agreement under certain conditions, or new situations will make you >re-evaluate your agreement, but if you just ignore broken agreements you are >creating a place where there can be no agreements, and where ALL agreements >are potentially invalid. If agreements are never enforced or followed, whats >the point of making agreements at all? > >One the key elements of enforcing agreements is your sense of community and >relationship to each other. When people break agreements they are risking the >sense of community and also their relationship to others. This is the most >potential enforcement tool that you have. "Hey Bill, you know everybody >worked really hard to agree that we would only spank our kids on Friday >night, and its really wrecking it for everybody else that you are spanking >your kids on Saturday. What can we do to help you get alignment with the >rest of us on this?" This is kind of an extreme example of how to approach >someone who is out of sync with a community agreement. However this only >works if people care about the sense of community and their relationship to >the others. If they don't care about the group, then you have little >recourse. If most people don't care about the group as a whole, it is likely >much of the efforts by the few, will eventually fade away into just another >condo. > >As a cooperative endeavor you really need to commit to the group agreements >and if you can't wholeheartly do that, then something is very wrong with the >agreement or your sense of cooperative community. If people routinely blow >off the group and the group rules, you are heading into a state of >non-community where your only recourse to broken agreements is outside >intervention. > >I understand that some folks within cohousing do not want a close sense of >community amoung their neighbors, they just want a tiny bit more than exists >other places and so a state of non involvement by a large majority might >work. However, I am not sure in this situation how you could ever have much >success doing things as a group, such as community dinners, etc. > >Rob Sandelin >Sharingwood > > > > > >
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