The participative management of the cooperative distinguishes several organizational levels according to the nature of the decisions, the responsibilities, the organization of meetings and the path of an idea, they are given as an indication to find their way.
3.1. The decisions
They concern the general orientations of the cooperative. They are taken in GA. They have a long-term implication and engage the future of the cooperative. They involve an important risk, directly affect the values of the cooperative or are considered to be in the general interest by a large number of cooperators.
They have a medium-term implication on the life of the cooperative and concretize the strategic lines deliberated by the GA. They have important consequences for the cooperative. They have more importance from a political point of view than an operational decision. They are often the responsibility of the OA.
They allow for the smooth day-to-day operation of the cooperative. They are limited in scope and involve minor risk. They are the responsibility of the OA and/or the lOC and/or the working circles.
The art of deciding is a balance between three dimensions: deciding alone, deciding together, not deciding.
The proposed point of balance is the following: decide together on the perimeters of authority of the roles and the working circles. That is to say, decide together who has the legitimacy to decide alone what, to trust those who will be in touch with reality to let them adapt. The coordinating body is always aware of the decisions and the managers work together to articulate the different realities.
Moreover, these perimeters adapt on the basis of felt needs, accepting "not to decide" until it is necessary. Everything that is not forbidden is allowed. Naturia is a space of trust where life, creativity and initiative can develop to their full potential.
In this spirit, collective decisions are based on consent, that is to say, it is important to make decisions to which no one has a reasonable objection, without looking for THE best solution in the absolute. Each decision is made as close as possible to those who will be affected by it and after consultation with all necessary people.
Decisions in the organs and bodies of the cooperative are generally taken by consent.
However, if after several attempts to overcome objections, a collegial decision proves impossible but absolutely necessary, a vote will be held, requiring that an absolute majority (50% + 1 vote) of at least the members present agree in principle to move to this mode of decision.
The overall decision-making body is the GA.
3.3 The path of an idea, the path of a project
The path of an idea, at Naturia, must take into account 3 times:
- A time for shaping the idea and determining SMART objectives
- A time of evaluation by the CB and/or the AO
- A time of realization
Before these three stages that we are going to formalize, there is a preliminary stage where the idea germinates from a particular atmosphere.
The atmosphere, the mood, thus helps, and an idea arises from an exchange or a meeting. A cooperator shares it informally and feels encouraged, because of the reactions received, to go further.
The co-operator sends his idea, which has been sketched out in a hesitant formulation, to the administrator-delegate for incubation.
The latter will take the idea into account and will enter into a dialogue with the cooperator to try to specify with him what should be specified.
Once the idea is aligned with Naturia's missions, the incubator presents the idea to the planner. Then the incubator announces to the cooperator that their idea will be discussed at the next AO and/or CB meeting.
The CBO and/or AO meets and discusses the idea, relating it to the various parameters involved: missions and values; possibilities for implementation and funding; who might take over; and the appropriate timing.
Based on the parameters, the CB and/or AO develops a detailed response and proposes a mode of implementation, a budget adapted by the planner, and a completion time.
He presents the idea to the Board of Directors who will consider whether the General Assembly should approve it.
A working group is formed to realize the idea within the framework established by the cooperative and, if necessary, by the political and fiscal authorities.
At the end of the project, the team tries to report on the particular contribution of this project to the community's self-image and to the objectives previously set.
proposal to present the project via a "project sheet" helping to structure the exposition of the idea and to link it with the more specific missions of the working circles. These missions are determined by the AO in charge of implementing the priority axes decided in the GA according to the needs of the co-operative. The particular contribution must not be limited to financial dimensions.
create a project from the idea, with objectives, deadlines and a budget
Maintain a back-and-forth process between the proposer, the relevant working group and the CO until completion.
- Define indicators
- Propose an evolution program
- Link to the planned budget
3.4 Cooperative Meetings: Possible Avenues
Defining a meeting typology helps to frame participation:
Working meetings are organized around a project accepted by the AO (AO, GA)
Decision (by consent), information and synchronization meetings can be organized in all bodies.
Tension meetings are held on a regular basis by the council of lights and at least twice a year.
It is advisable to reduce the round of objections and favor a round of constructive criticism that can lead to a collegial decision. In addition, it is useful to print the purpose and values charter and make it visible at each meeting for reference.
A coordinator/referee who keeps an eye on the charter and the reference texts (ROI, Statutes)
A facilitator who keeps an eye on the atmosphere and is attentive to the transitions from one point to another;
A "push-to-decide" secretary who rephrases and keeps an eye on the good understanding and agreement of all;
A timekeeper who keeps an eye on the clock.
3.5. In case of conflict
Building together can lead to frustrations, difficulties and even conflicts.
A conflict is the conjunction of a difference of opinion between at least two people, sometimes echoing a psychological wound in the protagonists. It can also be the symptom of a group or societal dysfunction.
We offer different devices:
The tour of the lake
Generally speaking, when a cooperator feels that he or she is having difficulty with someone, it is suggested that, on the principle of personal sovereignty, he or she invite the person with whom he or she is having a conflict to go around the lake to address the difficult points.
We believe that a frank exchange in a particular setting and space often brings the possibility of finding a way of doing, being together.
By applying the principle of shared responsibility. If a cooperator feels that he/she is in a conflict, he/she is encouraged to inform the person concerned.
If, at this first level, resolution is not forthcoming, the person(s) concerned may call upon a person(s) from the Enlightenment Council or another person of his or her choice who will, if necessary, call upon an external mediator or supervisor.
In the case of conflicts between working groups and in the case of persistent conflicts the tension is brought to the Coordination Body and if necessary to the OA and the GA for decision.
If a cooperator, or a group of cooperators, feels that the behavior or attitudes of another cooperator could jeopardize the general functioning of the cooperative, as well as its spirit and values, it can initiate a specific de-cooperation procedure according to the process described in the appendix