Member decision making
What constitutes a member decision?
Members need to be consulted on a decision when:
- the decision will materially impact members of the co-op – their working practices, productivity, resourcing, well-being etc.
- the decision will materially impact the running, business or reputation of the coop.
When do we make decisions?
Member decisions are usually taken in one of three forums:
- During a meeting such as the weekly General Circle Meeting, Monthly Members Meeting or ad-hoc/emergency Members Meetings
- In a specific Circle meeting, where that Circle has the authority to make decisions within their Domain (link) on behalf of the members.
- Occasionally we use Loomio to make decisions of a non-contentious kind (for example, where to go for Christmas Dinner).
How are decisions made?
In most circumstances we prefer to use consent-based decision making, but there are clauses in our Articles that define specific processes for certain decisions.
In consent-based decision making we try to make decisions that are 'good enough for now and safe enough to try'. We make a proposal, and ask if anyone has critical concerns, and if they do we use them to improve the proposal by addressing the concerns.
Read more about consent based decision making.
For certain decisions the Articles of Agile Collective Ltd require us to proceed in a specific manner. This is essentially a majority vote with defined levels to pass.
Each Member is asked to vote on a proposal.
In practice we don't use this often but the outline of how it works follows here.
- Adequate warning of the proposal or meeting should be given in order to allow the Members and opportunity to attend. In these cases we require at least 2 members or 50% of members (whichever is greater) to pass a member decision.
- The proposal is made and votes are taken by a show of hands. Votes can be:
- A vote is officially passed according to the split below*.
Ordinary resolutions: a simple majority of 51% of votes cast. Special resolutions**: not less than 75% of votes cast.
Exception: Decisions involving an alteration to articles that have been Entrenched in accordance with section 22 of the Act require the approval of 100% of the Members.
*Where possible we try not to pass a vote that everyone is not in agreement with.
**Special resolutions are outlined in our Articles of Association, but include significant decisions such as winding up the company, expulsion of a Member, and significant disposal of our assets.
If, for whatever reason, a member is not present when a decision must be reached, every reasonable effort should be made to contact them to ascertain their vote – specifically email, text and phone. The member should be given 24 hours to respond.
If they cannot be reached or do not respond in the required time and the decision is unanimously agreed to be so urgent as to require the vote to proceed without them, that member’s vote shall be registered as “Abstain” for practical purposes.