Use Multivoting to Simplify Group Decision-Making


If you’re working with a group trying to choose among a large number of options, multivoting is an easy, structured approach to help your team make a decision.

It’s a great tool to use with brainstorming sessions, but there are many times it can be useful. It’s a handy tool for your problem-solving toolbox.

What is Multivoting?

Multivoting is a way for a group to vote on a long list of ideas and narrow the list down to a few options for deeper analysis or final decision.

Each person gets the same number of votes they can apply as they wish. Once everyone votes, it’s easy to see where the group places priority or preference.

The team can then quickly come to an agreement on ranking or seeing the top choices.

When to Use It?

Use multivoting if you have a large list of options to choose from. You can take a long list and narrow it down to a few for another vote or make your final group selection. 

Use this decision-making method in the following situations:

  • You have a long list of options you need to narrow down for more focused discussion or analysis.
  • Your team is having trouble choosing among multiple options.
  • A decision needs to be made by group consensus.

Related: 9 Reasons Why Problem Solving Skills are Critical for Your Career

How to Perform Multivoting

Here are the simple steps to carry out multivoting: 

1. Bring your team together, virtually or in person. Include everyone who should be a part of the voting process. 

2. Create or share the existing list of options. Use brainstorming techniques and affinity mapping to generate a list of ideas, organize the information, and remove duplicates. 

3. Discuss items to ensure everyone understands each of the options in the list. If the options are wordy or lengthy, label them with letters for easier identification.

4. Allocate the same number of votes to each participant. If you have a shorter list, give each person 3 or 5 votes. If you have a long list, provide up to 10 per person.

5. Participants vote. Each person can spread their votes across the options in any way they choose. They can apply all votes to one choice or spread them out.

6. Participants can votes in the following ways:

  • use post-it notes or stickers to apply votes to items on a physical list (dot voting).
  • if privacy is important, participants can write their selections on a piece of paper or electronically and these can be tallied.
  • use an online tool with voting functionality such as PollUnit or Mural.

7. Count the number of votes each item received.

8. Prioritize the list by the number of votes each item received.

9. At this point, you can select the top few choices that received the highest number of votes and continue the discussions on each of the top-ranked items, and then vote again.

Ranked vote option

You can also use a ranked vote option. Each person can choose their first, second, and third choice. 1st choice gets 3 points, 2nd choice gets 2 points, and 3rd choice gets 1 point.

Multiple Voting Rounds

If you have a long list of possibilities, and you wish to narrow down your options, hold multiple voting rounds to whittle down your list. To do this, after the first vote, remove the options that got the fewest votes. You may reduce the number of votes each participant has after this round, also, if working with many votes.

Benefits of Multivoting

There are several benefits to using this technique:

  • Large lists become more manageable.
  • For those who have trouble making decisions, multiple votes can be less stressful.
  • Everyone participates in the decision-making process.
  • Everyone has an equal vote – it’s not simply the loudest person who gets the most attention. Instead, everyone gets an equal say.
  • This creates commitment to the team’s decision.


The multivoting technique is helpful if a group needs to narrow down or choose from a long list of options. It uses a structured approach and allows everyone to participate in the decision-making process.

It’s great for getting buy-in and can help a group have confidence in the choices made.

One Response

  1. imasabarbasa October 21, 2023

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