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Making a Decision by Consensus

How to Run a Decision-Making Meeting

True consensus is something we value for its ability to unite a group around a particular decision. Too often, however, all we achieve is false consensus in which participants don’t share their concerns and the leader presumes to have everyone’s support. Later, however, the decision may come undone. Here’s how to avoid this and build real consensus.

This meeting agenda template can be used to create a stand-alone meeting dedicated to reaching consensus on a decision, or incorporated into longer meetings covering additional topics.

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Getting Work Done in Meetings: Structures for Success

25-page Facilitator's Guide with tips, step-by-step instructions, & resources

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Meeting Goal

To develop a decision that we all can support.


  • Author:  Richard Lent, Ph.D.
  • Duration:  1 hour or less
  • Group Size:  12 or fewer
  • Solution Categories:  Managers
  • Meeting Types:  Decision Making Meetings

Agenda Overview

  1. Welcome
  2. The Proposed Decision
  3. Clarify Replies
  4. Confirm Agreements and Differences
  5. Document Decisions and Next Steps

Download the Agenda

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