Understanding The Dynamics Of Consensus.
We’re trying to understand the dynamics of consensus and would like to hear your point of view on it too here. https://demo.cusjo.com/consensus
Our understanding thus far is that consensus is not the same as unanimity, in that it’s not about getting 100% agreement and that even a 51% voting majority on a topic does not establish consensus. That to establish consensus there has to be an open, truthful and mature conversation. That consensus is not just a case of people sharing their thoughts and opinions but there also must be a genuine willingness to listen to and appreciate other people’s point of view, especially when they are at conflict with our own.
That when looking for consensus, voting is not the solution, as voting forces one to choose between what they have a preference for over another that is less preferred, with no real articulation of a thought process. That the voting process negates the in between ground and thus has the effect of polarisation, which could result in further conflict and division instead of getting to consensus. That giving a middle ground option in a voting format is still a case of forcing people to choose in a fixed format, thus discounting the possibility of new ideas coming forth from assimilating the points of views of others and building upon them as the context of the conversation self-educates and re-shapes itself. That the other problem with voting is that one can take a position without the need to articulate the reasons for taking that position, and while that may be an established legacy based entitlement it does very little to contribute to a conversation.
That when some degree of consensus is established within an agreed or stipulated time, it’s important to move forward and not wait any longer for further input, as long as everyone was given an equal opportunity to share their point of view transparently without any preferment or disadvantage. That operating within a stipulated time is necessary to prevent a situation in which some parties may deliberately choose to sit by the sidelines and not partake in the conversation in the hope that the rest of the group cannot move forward without them; thus giving them an opportunity to use that to gain leverage for their point of view to be more heavily weighted.
That seeking as broad and encompassing an opinion is not necessary but preferred, as it enriches the conversation and gives an equal opportunity for opinions at the fringe that serve the interest on minorities to be connected to the centre, allowing for a more customised consensus that works for as many people in the group as possible.
That the fair establishment of consensus has to make a provision and provide the opportunity for people to persuade others to their point of view. That it’s necessary when it comes to establishing consensus that everyone is given access to all points of view as they come in to inform the maturation of their own point of view. That everyone has a right to as many opportunities within the stipulated time to articulate and re-articulate their evolving point of view. Just the way it has been taking place since the beginning of human civilisation in villages, town squares and now in the globally connected world without people even having to be in the same place at the same time. That consensus is an ongoing process and needs to be revisited again and again over time to ensure action is taken where there is consensus and where there isn’t, further invitation to establish consensus is extended. This is useful at an international national, constituency, community, think-tank, policy-making, employee, customer, market research and events levels.
What are your thoughts on consensus? Please do share them at the URL below, and we will periodically publish the consensus amongst us to deepen our collective appreciation to enhance our understanding of the dynamics of consensus.