In principle, it works well when a group considers an issue three times before making a decision.
1. The first time raises notice and gets people to start thinking about the decision they are going to have to make.
2. The second time, we share information, share our interests, discuss “what if’s,” kick around some ideas, and perhaps develop some alternative approaches.
3. On the third consideration: decision.
Three considerations of any given issue is a satisfactory pace for most group members.
Practical Tip: When a new issue develops, formally introduce it to the group and be sure that group members know how to participate in the decision process. Give the issue or topic a name. Invite initial reactions. This is the first consideration.
Next, provide a time and place for information sharing, brainstorming, imagination, creativity, proposal development. This might be in a meeting of the full group or a committee meeting or perhaps a series of meetings. It can also happen via surveys or on-line collaboration. This is the second consideration.
Third, provide a time and place for final discussion and decision.
It is okay to be a bit pushy for a decision when the group has already considered the issue twice before. If the decision does not come easily on the third consideration at least decide how it is going to get decided.
– Craig Freshley