Building a consensus during business meetings validates participants and lets them know they matter. Experienced facilitators know how to tap into this powerful process, using it to build community and trust as well as stronger relationships in the workplace.

Reaching a consensus is not the same as casting a vote. In the latter, the position that garners the most votes wins; it is the rule of the majority. In the former, diverse elements, sometimes even differing points of view and widely divergent opinions, are synthesized to come up with a stand or a plan of action that is, to a great degree, the sum of all parts.

In gathering a consensus, everyone is heard and everybody listens. Even if one strong point of view dominates, no one feels ignored, left out or, worse, rejected. Participants who have reached a true consensus feel they played a role in the final outcome. They not only feel empowered during the process, but wholly invested and involved in the final decision.

A vote divides participants into losers (those who did not vote for the winner) and winners (those who did). Human nature being what it is, it is normal for the “losers” to resent the winners and only begrudgingly give their consent to the final decision.

On the other hand, reaching a consensus builds community and trust; in a very real sense, in a consensus, everybody wins. Participants feel they have a stake in the outcome because they were part of the process of arriving at it.

Reaching a consensus during meetings or seminars takes training and experience. The professional facilitators at have years of experience in leading groups toward a meaningful and effective consensus. Our consultants can help your business run focused meetings and ultimately, save you money.

Each year, American businesses lose almost $3 billion because of unproductive meetings alone. That is an enormous waste of precious resources. The meeting experts at can put that money back in the coffers of American businesses where it can help fuel the country’s return to a healthy economy.