Consensus plays an important part in a team’s success. Decisions reached with consensus are the most durable and well executed.

Knowing where the team’s passions are on a topic, understanding how committed everyone is to the problem, and understanding what gives your team pause on an issue are just some of the benefits of checking for consensus.

One way you can quickly check team consensus is the Fist of Five vote. It works like this:

On the count of 3 everyone holds up their hand in a vote, with 1-5 fingers up, meaning:

– 5 Fingers: I love this idea.
– 4 Fingers: I am very happy with this idea.
– 3 Fingers: I can live with this idea.
– 2 Fingers: I have trouble supporting this idea.
– 1 Finger: I cannot live with nor support this idea.

After all hands are up, look for any 1 or 2-finger votes. If there are none, you can move forward knowing you have consensus. However, any vote of 1 or 2 fingers means you cannot move forward. You will need to facilitate the team’s conflict resolution and lead them to a commonly accepted solution resulting in another Fist of Five vote of 3-fingers or higher.

Instant Agenda has added the ability to hold a Fist of Five vote, so you can now reach consensus in your meetings faster and easier than ever before! While discussing a topic click on the “Call a Vote” button:

After clicking on the Fist of Five button, fill out the purpose of the vote and press the “Start Vote” button:

Everyone in the meeting will be prompted to vote, by selecting the number of fingers to raise:

After everyone has voted you can save the vote as a decision of the meeting:

This will save the vote as a decision on the topic, with the results viewable in the meeting:

We hope this makes it even easier for you to reach consensus in your meetings. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to use the feedback button in the app. Also, we’re always happy to hear from you directly — just schedule a 15-minute call with us using this link: https://calendly.com/instant-agenda/product-feedback

Shaun Katona

Shaun has a background in custom website and application development for small businesses and Fortune 500 companies. Originally from Michigan, he's been running the trails of Colorado since 2008.

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