Modular course introducing and practicing the fundamentals of Collaborative Decision-making in six 2-hour modules (co-located or online video-conference)


There is no doubt that as organisations try to become more adaptive and responsive, often applying principles of self-organisation, teams can no longer rely on a few people at the top to make all the decisions.  Indeed, if employees are to be engaged, they would not want to have their say ignored, we need a way for all team members' voices to be heard.  So:

  • How can teams make decisions efficiently and effectively without spending hours and hours deliberating?
  • How can you ensure that everyone's voice is genuinely heard equivalently, and that a team can see and take all perspectives into account?
  • How can you prevent decision paralysis where a team member blocks a proposal and causes an impasse?

Such issues are neatly addressed in Collaborative Decision-making (sometimes called Integrative Decision-making) and the core principles of Sociocracy.  Sociocracy includes a simple yet elegarnt way for teams, groups and circles to make decisions collaboratively in a way that is both quick and effective, and genuinely takes every team members' viewpoint into consideration in a highly creative way.






Collaborative Decision-making is a centre-piece of sociocracy and is intentionally very simple.  It does not pretend to be the with all and end all of all organisations' problems, on the contrary it concentrates only on governance and co-determination.  Sociocracy has been called the 'mother of holacracy', but while the latter is a complex and complete organisational operating system, sociocracy is a very simple governance system based on just three principles.  This course can thus also serve as a good starting point for those wanting to later learn the more complex S3 and holacracy.  Sociocracy regards itself as an empty method, so it complements and works well in conjunction with other approaches like Agile, Lean, Beyond Budgeting, Responsive and Open Space Technology.


Modular Format

The course is basically a 2-day learning workshop which has been split into seven independent 2-hour modules to make it easier for people schedule around busy schedules and to do so by online video conference from whereever they are.  There is one core module which serves as an introduction and taster and is a prerequisite for all other modules - this has to be taken before any of the other modules can be taken. The other modules are optional and selective, they can be taken on a pay-as-you-attend basis, or the whole series can be purchased in advance as a package.


Who is the course for?

The course, or any of the modules, is for anyone working in teams, whether work-teams, project teams, working groups, steering committees or community groups.  It is also for leaders, managers or supervisors who want to engender more engagement in their teams and shift from a mindset of firefighting to one of team problem solving.  Indeed the module is for anyone interested in learning collaborative decision-making skills, or wanting to introduce better decisions in teams and organisations regrardless whether they are currently in a team or relevant organisation or not.

Course Structure:

Except for the core module which is prerequisite for all other modules, the modules can be taken selectively.  While  there is a logic in the order presented below, each module is self contained and they can be taken in any order.



A. Core Module Introducing Collaborative Decision-making

  • Explore types of decisions, advantages, disadvantages
  • Consent-based decisions (vs consensus) - Rationale
  • Simple decision-making process (short form), with practice


B-1:  Roles in Self-organising Circles

  • Purpose of circle structure, rounds & double-linking
  • 4 key circle roles, what they do, circle memory
  • Electing by consent (practice electing facilitator)


B-2:  Effective Governance Meetings

  • Function of Facilitator, Input-Output    
  • Standard stages for effective meeting
  • Principles of rounds & feedback loops


B-3:  Embracing Diversity

  • The principle of complementarity (both/and)
  • Eliciting collective wisdom through objections
  • Refining proposals to address objections


B-4:  Complex Decision-making

  • Picture forming, weaving
  • Proposal shaping and fine-tuning
  • Review of decision-making process


B-5:  Feedback & Development

  • Growing by ongoing learning (learning organisation)
  • Consent-based performance review
  • Creating a self-development plan

B-6:  Conflict Resolution

  • Removing factors creating conflict
  • Reviewing win-win and both-and
  • Objections revisited and trouble-shooting



Course Options

Everything starts with the core introctory module A. Introducing Collaborative Decision-making, which is a prerequisite for all other modules.  Once this core module has been completed, there are several options for doing the rest of the course:

  1. Do all of the 6 modules above (B-1 - B-6), or just some selectively.  This allows you to learn collaborative decision-making online from where you are, easy to fit it around a busy schedule.  The participants are likely to be different every time, so there is less continuity. This page represents this option.
  2. Join a SOLT project team with weekly meetings for 10 weeks - you will be grouped into the same team to work on a common real project sociocratically while covering the content of the 6 modules - this is the best way to experience sociocracy in action.  See Sociocracy Leadership Training.
  3. If you are already part of a team and are learning collaborative decision-making together as a team, then it is best to experience sociocracy working on the team's actual issues.  Collaborative Decision-making for Teams is a online video course covering the same material, complemented with group coaching.
  4. Run a co-located 2-day face-to-face workshop comprising the material in the 6 modules and more.
  5. If you are an organisation then we can design a bespoke program for you


What will you gain from this course?

The complete course (introductory module A plus 6 modules B) covers the essence of sociocracy and gives participants plenty of opportunities to practice the skills learned.

  • Fully harnessing the power from diversity of views
  • More efficient team meetings
  • Genuine listening to each other
  • Team harmony while respecting multi-perspectivity
  • Decisions that stick and get executed
  • Equivalence of voice
  • Feedback loops with self correction
  • Unleashing collective wisdom
  • Automatic buy-in


How will you learn?

Each module is delivered interactively via teleconference (video conference using Zoom). Contrary to most types of webinars these telenar workshops are highly interactive and involve a great deal of participant involvement - they are not a listening sessions, and participants should expect to be active. Each module includes break-out groups giving participants practice time to try out some of the steps in smaller groups.

In order to participate you will need a computer or laptop connected to the internet, with access to online platforms like Googledocs.  We will use Zoom as our video conference platform, which can easily be downloaded at no cost to you. The precise details will be emailed to you after registration.



Who is the workshop leader?

The workshop is run by Open2Flow, and the head trainer and group coach is Francois Knuchel:

Francois is a vastly experienced trainer and consultant, specialising in trans-cultural management training, new-paradigm leadership and lean business design. His experience of using circle management methods in the Japanese automotive industry has deeply influenced his passion for re-imagining the way that we work together.

He  is an important member of Open Space and Sociocracy communities, and has been working with Lean Management since before it was called Lean.  Francois is a member of the Human Organising Project, and is involved in the RSA’s fast growing ‘Reinventing Work Network’.


How much does it cost?

The core module is run regularly and costs only £15.- per person.  Each follow up module costs £30.- per person, or £150.-  for 6 modules as a package.  The core module has its own page here, and the remaining 5 modules are together on this page.

These prices are for online module by module (Option I above) learning only.  For organisation it is also possible to run the course on a on-location basis in a 2-full-day face-to-face workshop (Option IV) and the cost will vary depending on whether it is at a sponsored venue (e.g. client venue) or rented.




Next Module:


None planned at the moment.


The next modules will be scheduled for early summer.  If the demand is high, however, and / or 10 or more people purchase the same module, then we will run the workshop as soon as possible at a date and time convenient to all who have registered.  If this is the case we will email you and let you know.  If for whatever reason you have not consumed the modules you bought within six months we will refund you without further ado.


The module series is being run as a series of 6 consecutive modules starting 20 June 2017 for 6 weeks.  Go to Eventbrite for more information.



To book please first press the Buy Now button, select what you want to purchase (one or several modules or package) and pay.  The Paypal payment system will open in a separate tab or window.  Open2Flow is a trading name for Transcultural Synergy Ltd, so either name may show.  Come back to this page or tab when done - see below.

Module Type or Package

After purchasing a voucher, come back to this page or tab, copy and paste the long invoice number (in a Paypal confirmation email) into the form below and complete it.  Where available please include the date(s) of the module(s) you are taking in the Notes/message box.  If you are joining from outside the UK, please let us know which country you will be joining us from.  Please also include a secondary contact detail (telephone, mobile, skype, twitter or second email address) in case we cannot contact on your main email address.

 [creativecontactform id="1"] 

If you would like to discuss the modules or course further, please contact us +44 (0)20 7117 8648, or complete the form above (without invoice #) to find out more.