Consensus Decisions
From: Becky Schaller (
Date: Sat, 7 Mar 1998 13:51:55 -0600
Our co-housing group is hoping to moving into construction stage 
fairly soon. Therefore, there will probably be a need to make many 
decisions quickly.  Consensus decision making is often not conducive 
to making quick decisions.  Would others be willing to say how they 
dealt with decisions during this period. Or has this question been 
addressed somewhere that you could refer me to read.

Another consensus question I have is this.  Technically a decision is 
made by consensus when there are no one blocks the decision. In our 
group, we show cards.  If you hold up a green card, that means you 
agree with the proposal, a yellow card means you are neutral, an 
orange one means you have serious reservations/standing aside, and a 
red card means you are standing in the way or blocking the decision.  
Someone could make a proposal and the group would have one green card 
and the rest would be orange cards. In this case it would be clear 
that this was not a good decision for the group even though it 
technically would pass as a consensus decision.  There is a whole 
range of different cards that might be held up for a given decision.  
Has anybody looked at a clear way of deciding when a decision is a 
consensus decision when the color of cards is mixed?  Or, again, is 
there something that addresses this question that I might read?

I appreciate any information and help you might give.

Becky Schaller
TNDC Cohousing in Tucson

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