Evolving our organization

What do you do if you feel that something should be different at VSHN?

People see things that they think should be different. There are always opportunities to do new things or improve existing ones. Simply doing everything straight away will lead us into chaos, looking away and doing nothing is likely to harm our organization or bring it to a standstill.

We need ways to capture such opportunities and respond to them appropriately and in a timely manner. In this way, those responsible can understand, decide on, and solve the problem together with the people who experience or are directly affected by it. In this way, we can do our work more effectively and in a more structured way, and achieve our goals while holding on to our values as humans.


At VSHN there are no managers to solve problems for you. We’ve something we believe is much better:

s3 cocreate and evolve
  • Understand and assign Drivers
    We consciously notice tension, actively try to understand organizational Drivers from that, and assign them to people responsible for an area within VSHN (a.k.a. Domains).

  • Respond to Organizational Drivers
    The people responsible decide together, how they respond to an Organizational Driver.

  • Create Proposals
    Affected and interested people, or people with the most knowledge about the topic, gather information and from that create a Proposal that addresses the Driver.

  • Consent Decision Making
    The people responsible directly or indirectly include people that could be affected by the Proposal. We proceed as long as there are no reasons not to, in the sense of good enough for now, safe enough to try (until the next review).

  • Agreements
    We implement and follow through on agreements and previous decisions to the best of our abilities. We look out for and raise Tensions and Objections actively as we become aware of them.

  • Evaluate and Evolve
    We review Drivers, Agreements, domains, and activities regularly to see if they’re still needed and having the intended effect on the organization, and to improve them as we go.

  • Governance Meetings
    Where we decide about next steps, choose people to tackle something and let Proposals become Agreements through Consent Decision Making.

These are Patterns from Sociocracy 3.0, each useful on their own, but interacting together they help us work more effectively, organize ourselves, and develop our organization.

We explicitly try not to call this collection of patterns a process. All of these patterns should be seen as tools to help you navigate through the challenges and opportunities you face and evolve our organization.

Where this happens

All of these patterns can be used in any team, in meetings, within your own role at VSHN, or your daily work. They prove useful whenever you need to understand a problem or opportunity, find a solution, make a decision, or find out whether something is still needed or useful.

That said, there are some established use cases where we make heavy use of these patterns:

Getting help

Even though Sociocracy 3.0 only tries to make you aware of things that happen or should happen naturally anyway, making you aware of them will most likely still overwhelm you if you aren’t used to it.

The Facilitator Interest Group is here to:

From time to time we organize (mandatory) internal or external trainings to practice S3 patterns and build knowledge.

S3 posters used on these pages come from here and are used under the Creative Commons ShareAlike License (CC BY-SA)