Re: Contentious issues?
From: fergyb2 (
Date: Tue, 15 Sep 2020 10:11:15 -0700 (PDT)
I agree with Muriel, ignoring never works, what does is careful and respectful 
talking it through.  Here at Swans Market we are a small urban cohousing 
Community 20 years after move in and we have never had to use the emergency 
voting option that was put into our bylaws so nervous banks would lend to us.  
      That’s not to say we haven’t had our share of contentious issues.  When 
we get into trouble it’s usually through impatience and rushing to a decision 
in spite of some folks reservations.  When you do that, resentments build and 
it becomes harder to reach consensus on the next, unrelated issue that comes 
up.  We are so used to rushing to a decision in our culture it’s hard for 
people to get used to the amount of time and effort required to reach a good 
decision that everyone understands and can live with.  There is no substitute 
for talking it through and really listening to each other.  We also have 
brought in outside Cohousing professionals to facilitate meetings on occasion 
when we have gotten stuck. A useful strategy I recommend.  And facilitator 
training on consensus decision making BEFORE move in so you all start with some 
basic skills.
Good luck to you in this adventure we call cohousing.

Bonnie Fergusson
Swans Market Cohousing
Oakland, CA land of the many smokes currently

Sent from my iPad


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