What is Consensus?
The concept of consensus has become quite familiar and desirable means of informal business communication not only in the political fields but also in the commercial spheres as well. It is a common agreement of opinion on a given problem among the majority of people in a group or community. The board meeting of commercial organizations takes certain decisions through consensus. Sometimes, merely a copy of resolution is circulated among the members of a particular group to get their approval. When the decisions are taken unanimously, the unity of the group is recognized. It projects a good image of the business house and the status of the organization is raised. It also suggests high morale of the management to the employees, customers, shareholders, and other people.
Consensus does not mean that there exist no opposite views among the members of the group. Of course, perfect unanimity should not e expected because it cannot exist. As consensus does not imply perfect unanimity, it implies that the majority of people express a particular view, which is accepted as the consensus by all the members including those who actually oppose it. The dissent of the opposition is sacrificed in the interests of the harmony among the members or in the larger interests of the organization.
The consensus is sought through consultation. The problem is presented before the board meeting by the chief of the management in the form of the proposal or resolution. The problem is analyzed and some additional information regarding it is also collected.
Significance of Consensus in Business:
- The consensus communication projects a good image of the management.
- The essential image of the management presented through consensus strengthens the confidence of the employees in their superiors.
- There can be little or no chance for conflict among the employees because the instructions issued by the directors never conflicts with each other.
- The consensus is always based on the attitude of mutual respect, which enables the members to accept and support the views of each other.
- The members promptly accept the decisions of consensus because they are derived after mutual consultations.
- The process of consensus ultimately leads to an unquestioning acceptance of the authority of the chief.
- The trust of the members in their chief helps to avoid the splits and conflicts between the majority and the oppositions.