Gradients of Agreement

This tool is useful for getting a sense of where people stand on difficult decisions and helping the group move along more quickly with a decision.

  1. Draw a line on the board with “Veto” at one end and “Endorse” at the other with three points on the line in between. The whole lines reads, in this order: Veto — Disagree, won’t block — Mixed —Agree with reservations — Endorse
  2. Write the question under consideration above this line.
  3. Group decides a metric for what’s the standard for moving ahead (e.g. okay to move ahead with any vetos? Agree to move ahead as long as at least half of group is at agree with reservation, or… whatever). It’s important that this is done before the next step.
  4. People then vote for where they are on the gradient. Note this can be done in a variety of ways, including assigning numbers 1-5 for each position and then asking people to hold up the # of fingers for their vote.
  5. Results are tallied and compared to metric for moving ahead.
  6. Anyone who voted “low” on the scale then stands up and states their objections.
  7. When changes or adjustments are possible, then the question is changed and people re-vote.

Variant: This can be done with a “standing line” where people actually stand where they “vote” on a line and then state their reasons.

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