Policies are decisions that limit or permit future operational decisions and actions. They include budgets, strategic plans, allocation of resources, including money and people, and the basis for leadership by the Operational Leader. Policies govern the day-to-day activities of the working group.
An extension of consent, and sometimes presented as a fourth principle, is that people are elected to roles and responsibilities by consent. The members of the working group nominate and discuss the task description and nominees availability and positive ability to fulfill the task, and then consent to the assignment. The nominee must also consent. This process ensures that the team selects the person that the group believes is the best for the task and that they will support on the task. The task description and the discussion ensures that the person elected understands the groups expectations.
A sociocratic organization is governed by circles, semi-autonomous policy decision-making groups that correspond to working groups, whether they are departments, teams, or local neighborhood associations. Each circle has its own aim and steers its own work by performing all the functions of leading, doing, and measuring on its own operations. Together the three steering functions establish a feedback loop, making the circle self-correcting, or self-regulating.
In circle meetings, each person is equivalent and has the power to consent or object to proposed actions that affect their responsibility in the organization.
On a daily basis, activities are directed by a leader without discussion or reevaluation of decisions. This produces efficiency and forward movement. If there is disagreement, the leader makes the decision in the moment. the issue is discussed in the next circle meeting, and a policy is established to govern such decisions in the future.
To ensure that feedback travels up and down and across the organization, circles are arranged in a hierarchy of overlapping circles. The overlapping is formed by the circles operational leader and one or more elected representatives who are full members of both circles. This overlap is called a double link.
The double-link is unique to sociocracy and forms a feedback loop that allows the system to self-correct. The operational leader is elected by the higher circle to communicate the decisions and needs of the larger organization to the circle. The circle then elects one or more of its members to communicate the decisions and needs of the circle to the higher circle. While each link participates fully in all aspect of circle discussions, they are responsible for communicating specific information.
Other Methods and Practices
There are many other methods and practices that support the governance of the sociocratic organization, but the beauty is the simplicity of the basic principles. As long as the principles are maintained and the values equivalence, effectiveness, and transparency guide the application of methods and practices, they will produce organizations that are harmonious and productive. The sociocratic vision.
Article from www.socionet.us/library/sociocracy - PDF below: Sociocracy In Action w demos
Sociocracy is birthed from the hearts of all
participants. Â Heart-centered decision-making
creates high frequency results with greater
productivity in the emergent culture of peace.