Okanagan Panorama

Thursday, 28 January 2021 11:52

How to Use Multi-voting to Make a Group Decision

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Multi voting in actionWhat is it? Multi-voting allows a group to select the most important or preferred items from a list with a minimum of discussion. Those items that move to the top of the list can then be explored in depth. Multi-voting is done though a series of votes, with low ranking items eliminated after each round.

Why use it? Many issues are so complex and broad that long lists of items emerge during a brainstorming session. Multi-voting is a quick way to eliminate items and determine those on which the group members want to focus.

When to use it? Multi-voting is used after a brainstorming session or to narrow down any long list.

How to use it? After a brainstorming session, post all the flip charts for the group to see and follow the process below:

  1. Ask the group if any two or more items are so similar that they can be combined. Combine any items the group chooses by using the most representative wording and drawing a line through duplicates.
  2. Clearly number (or letter) all remaining ideas.
  3. Decide how many votes each person will have. A good rule of thumb is to allow each person a number of votes equal to one third of the total items on the list. For example, if there are thirty items on the list, each person has ten votes.
  4. Have each group member vote for items by listing the item number (or letters) on a piece of paper.
  5. Collect the pieces of paper and tally the number of votes for each item, placing the number of votes beside each item on the flipchart.
  6. Eliminate the items with the least votes. If there is no obvious separation between items, simply eliminate any that fall in the lower third of the ranking.
  7. Repeat this step until there is an obvious favorite or until there are a few clear favorites at the top of the list.
  8. Stop the voting and have the group discuss the results. If there is one clear favorite, ask the group if and why this represents the best choice. If there are several top choices, determine with the group whether one choice must be selected. If so, ask the group to discuss the pros and cons of each of the top choices and reach a decision by consensus as to which idea is best. If necessary, use one of the other methods to determine the best choice.

Caution: Multi-voting does not guarantee consensus. Do not use multi-voting when data collection, analysis, and decision criteria are necessary because it does not allow for much (if any) discussion of items prior to voting.


Compiled by Rae Stonehouse

Rae Stonehouse

Author Bio:

Rae A. Stonehouse is a Canadian born author & speaker. His professional career as a Registered Nurse working predominantly in psychiatry/mental health, has spanned four decades.

Rae has embraced the principal of CANI (Constant and Never-ending Improvement) as promoted by thought leaders such as Tony Robbins and brings that philosophy to each of his publications and presentations.

Rae has dedicated the latter segment of his journey through life to overcoming his personal inhibitions. As a 27+ year member of Toastmasters International he has systematically built his self-confidence and communicating ability. He is passionate about sharing his lessons with his readers and listeners. His publications thus far are of the personal/professional self-help, self-improvement genre and systematically offer valuable sage advice on a specific topic.

His writing style can be described as being conversational. As an author Rae strives to have a one-to-one conversation with each of his readers, very much like having your own personal self-development coach. Rae is known for having a wry sense of humour that features in his publications.


Author of Self-Help Downloadable E-Books, paperbacks and on-line courses:


Power Networking for Shy PeoplePower Networking for Shy People: How to Network Like a Pro

52 Power Networking Tips: How to Network Like a Pro

PROtect Yourself Now!PROtect Yourself Now! Violence Prevention for Healthcare Workers

The Savvy Emcee: How to be a Dynamic Master of Ceremonies.

Power of Promotion: On-line Marketing for Toastmasters Club Growth

You're Hired! Job Search Strategies That Work: Available as an easily downloadable e-book or as an on-line e-course.

You're Hired! Resume Tactics: Job Search Strategies That Work

Job Interview Preparation: Job Search Strategies That Work

Leveraging Your Network: Job Search Strategies That Work

You're Hired! Power Tactics: Job Search Strategies That Work

You're Hired! Job Searching Success Tips List

Working With Words: Adding Life to Your Oral Presentations

Blow Your Own Horn! Personal Branding for Business Professionals

Make it Safe! A Family Caregiver's Home Safety Assessment Guide for Supporting Elders@Home


Phone Rae 250-451-6564 or info@raestonehouse.com

Rae’s social … are you?

Twitter: http://twitter.com/RaeStonehousehttp://twitter.com/RaeStonehouse

Linkedin? Rae is http://www.linkedin.com/in/raestonehousehttp://www.linkedin.com/in/raestonehouse

Copyright 2018- 2021 Rae A. Stonehouse.

The above document may be freely copied and distributed as long as the author’s name and contact info remain attached.


To learn more about Rae A. Stonehouse, visit the Wonderful World of Rae Stonehouse at https://raestonehouse.com.