Loaf of bread sliced. Photo by Louise Lyshøj on Unsplash

How we work together

How we come to agreement and communicate as a group is very important, particularly as a diverse group of people working to build an intentional community and with a development project focus.

We have strategies in place to facilitate discussion and come to understanding – our Communications Agreement and a method used to find group consensus.

How we engage with one another

We have a Communications Agreement in place that sets out our expectations of how we as individuals will interact with one another.

  • I will use "I" statements, and speak for myself, not others. 
  • I will speak succinctly and to the point.
  • I will take responsibility for owning and naming my own feelings. 
  • I will respect others’ rights to speak without interruption. 
  • I undertake to respect other’s privacy by not discussing outside the group other people’s personal issues which may arise within the group process. 
  • I undertake to value and respect different contributions and perspectives of all individuals. 
  • I undertake to keep relationships within the group clear by dealing with any problematic issues directly with the persons concerned.
  • I recognise that we work best together when we remember to have fun!

How do we come to a decision as a group?

We use a system of coloured cards to facilitate group discussion and come to consensus. The cards indicate, for example, whether a person has a question, comment or an answer. These each have different priorities within a discussion. The process ensures everyone is heard, everyone contributes, and there is a focus to the discussion.

The coloured cards system is used successfully in many other cohousing communities.