Appreciative Inquiry: Exploring and Engaging the Positive Core

Appreciative Inquiry: Exploring and Engaging the Positive Core

Appreciative Inquiry: Exploring and Engaging the Positive Core October 19-21, 2005 Steve Cato Moss Bay Consulting 6925 Lake Alice Road SE Fall City, WA 98024 (425) 222-4665 [email protected] Peggy Holman The Open Circle Company 15347 SE 49th Place Bellevue, Washington (425) 746-6274 [email protected] Workshop Purpose To introduce the philosophy, practice and process of Appreciative Inquiry so that you can apply it to your work and to your life. Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected]

Page 2 Agenda Day 1 AM PM ~4:30 What is Appreciative Inquiry? Introductions Experiencing AI The Interview Lunch The Art of Imagining Internalizing and Integrating Images Positive action Reflections Adjourn Day 2 AM PM ~4:30 Day 3 AM

How Do I Apply AI? Reflections Open items Lunch Application Closing reflections ~4:30 Adjourn How Does AI Work? Reflections Topic Choice Lunch The Art of the Question Adjourn Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 3 What is Appreciative Inquiry? A process, philosophy, and life practice grounded in research demonstrating that focusing on whats working and aspirations for the future achieves more and does it faster and more sustainably than solving problems. Peggy Holman, [email protected]

Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 4 Appreciative Inquiry PROBLEM SOLVING ORIENTATION APPRECIATIVE ORIENTATION Fill the Gap Realize the Possibilities PAST CURRENT FUTURE STATE THE QUESTIONS THE QUESTIONS Whats wrong? Whats working? How do we fix it? Whats possible? What shall we do to achieve it?

Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 5 AI Questions 1. Describe a peak experience or "high point" in your work with your organization. What was happening? Who was involved? What made it such a powerful experience? 2. What do you most value about... yourself? your work? your organization? 3. What core factors give life to your organization? 4. Imagine a miracle happened. You were asleep for ten years and wake up to find your organization is exactly as you'd like it to be. What's happening that's different? How would you know it is what you want? Adapted from Cooperrider, David and Diana Whitney,

Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Revolution in Change, The Change Handbook, Holman, Peggy and Tom Devane, eds., Berrett-Koehler, 1999. Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 6 Group Discussion/Discovery (groups of 6stay with partner) Introduce highlights from interview with your partner Find common themes & strong resonances 1. High points 2. Continuity (things we want to keep) 3. Images of the future we want Record highpoints on a flip chart Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 7 A Little Background Developed principally by Dr. David Cooperrider at Case Western Reserve University in 1987.

Used all over the world: In Nepal helping disempowered women help themselves Avon Mexico to deal appreciatively with sexual harassment Thousands of practitioners around the world Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 8 A Map of AI Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 9 Some Strategies for Interviewing Across organization - mixed Mixed groups of stakeholders interview across the whole

Across organization - by group 1 stakeholder group interviews another stakeholder group (nice in merger situations) Waterfall - mass mobilization After interview, ask if interviewee wants to be trained Team Meeting 1 question per team meeting; integrated into business "Road Trips Within your own organization/community Benchmark others Talk to customers/community members Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 10

POSITIVE IMAGE/POSITIVE ACTION Placebo Effect In medical studies 30-60% of the time, placebos are as effective as a drug Pygmalion Effect The teacher's image is the most powerful predictor of performance Sports Imagery Visualization by world-class athletes cited as significant contributor to victory Inner Dialogue Our guiding image is the sum of +/- self-talk; healthy people maintain at least 2:1 ratio Rise and Fall of Cultures Can predict 25 years ahead based upon the stories the culture tells about itself Affirmative Capability The mind doesn't hold "not" so the image stays without the no Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected]

Page 11 Reality is only a consensual hunch - Lily Tomlin Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 12 Internalizing & Integrating Images A vision paints a picture of a desired future. Called Provocative Propositions, Possibility Statements, Design Principles, these word pictures describe the elements that can bring about that future by guiding decision making and action. Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 13 Criteria for Design Principles

Is it provocative? Does it stretch, challenge, or interrupt the status quo? Does it make your heart soar? Is it specific? Does it create a picture of a possibility that you can envision provocative, yet practical? Is it desired? If this actually came to pass, would it be what you want? Is it stated boldly, affirmatively and in the present tense? Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 14 DP Examples HAVING THE COURAGE TO FACE REALITY/LETTING GO We honour our Courage in the face of the challenges of our work, to accept the reality that we will not always know the answers. We embrace those moments and let go of our fear. We open ourselves to the Creative Magic in us and are ready for Change. THE EXPRESSION OF FAITH IN ME GREW MY CONFIDENCE AND MOTIVATION We are a society that believes everyone is capable of amazing growth and achievement. We trust that others have faith in us to always be our best. We commit to honour each other, in truthful ways, acknowledging contributions that make a difference and build our confidence. THE HONOURING WAS AUTHENTIC We make a difference best when the honour does not leaves us feeling slimed and make us say bull shit deep inside. We feel honouring is authentic when it touches us unexpectedly and emotionally. When your honouring is authentic, I trust you back. We both feel safe.

Then together we have the power to make a difference. HOLDING THE TENSION/STAYING WITH CONFUSION Creativity is our lifeblood. It is fuelled by confusion and tension like the challenge of holding water in your hands. When our mystery, energy and uncertainty are embraced, the power of possibilities and alternatives are unleashed. GIVING HONOUR GENERATES GIVING HONOUR Shes a strange cove our placeWe take on the world but the guts of it is, were mates who stick together with an unconditional positive regard. Its my privilege to stand beside yous. LISTENING TO YOUR HEART Listen. We find ourSelves in the stillness, in the space in between. Living in readiness to hear, trusting our Self to emerge and reveal joy, passion, care, the unknown, surprise! Honouring and respecting what is true for another, we have faith what is revealed makes a difference. Appreciative Inquiry Workshop, Melbourne, Australia, October 16-19, 2000 Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 15 DP Examples (cont.) The Vision: A balanced ecosystem is essential for all aspects of vibrant, healthy forests and viable mountain communities. The principles:

Key factors in land management decisions for Healthy mountain ecosystems are: o Sustainability o Biological diversity o Productivity o Indigenous species o Resource conservation and restoration o Acknowledgment of fire as a natural component Responsible, efficient use of natural resources promotes improved air and water quality and water quantity for the communities and natural environment. An open forest with healthy tree spacing supports wildlands and mountain communities that are ecologically resilient and at low risk of catastrophic wildfires. Care and stewardship of our mountains and forests requires education, conservation and community involvement. Based on peer reviewed science, environmental laws are streamlined, balanced and designed to sustain a healthy forest. Capacities of the mountains are recognized and understood, established and supported. Funding and other resources integral to the implementation our plans are identified and available.

Decision making is timely, inclusive, collaborative, informed, delivered and implemented through coordinated governance. Responsible behavior contributes to a multi-use forest in which all living systems experience an enhanced quality of life. From the San Bernardino Mountain Summit Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 16 Appreciative Inquiry Principles Constructionist Principle We construct realities based on our previous experience, so our knowledge and the destiny of the system are interwoven. Principle of Simultaneity Inquiry and change are simultaneous Poetic Principle The systems story is constantly co-authored, and is open to infinite interpretations Anticipatory Principle

What we anticipate determines what we find Positive Principle As an image of reality is enhanced, actions begin to align with the positive image Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 17 Typical Outcomes Change in basic orientation from problem-focused to possibility-focused Clarified or enhanced sense of identity, shared values & culture Established climate of continual learning & inquiry

Renewal of group energy, hope, motivation & commitment Increase in curiosity, wonder and "reverence for life" Whole system changes in culture & language (increase in cooperative practices & decrease in competition; increased ratio of positive: negative comments; increase in affirmative questions and/or narrative-rich communication) Decrease in hierarchical decision-making; increase in egalitarian practices & selfinitiated action Improved working relations/conflict resolution Successful achievement of intents listed above From David Cooperrider, AI Training Module , Feb. 2002, coid =1167 Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 18 Topic Choice

Builds on earlier themes Bold Desired Strategic/high leverage Energizing (sometimes opposites together) Learning about it would make a difference Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 19 Creating Powerful Questions GOOD QUESTIONS: Captivate interviewees through focusing on what matters Invite personal stories and aspirations Stimulate fresh thinking and deep feelings through evocative language Spark the appreciative imagination THROUGH THE MIX OF QUESTIONS: Uncover the best of whats working and whats possible Explore many dimensions: past and future, relationship with self, connections to others and to the

subject area Uncover essential values, aspirations and inspirations Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 20 Example Questions HOW WE LEAD: Successful organizations require several types of leadership. One kind is when individuals step up to the plate and lead because the situation calls for it, regardless of job title or position. The other kind of leadership critical to organizational success occurs when individuals accept formal leadership responsibility as a supervisor or manager. 1. Describe a time while you have been with the NPS when leadership was needed, you stepped in, took a leadership role and it paid off with success. What were the details? What was it about you that made it possible for you to succeed? What was it that others did that contributed to your success? What organizational factors (leadership, culture, training, resources, etc.) helped make it possible for you to be successful in that situation? 2. Looking at your entire experience at the NPS, what is your most outstanding memory of a supervisor or manager whose work and leadership abilities inspired you? What are the details? What was it about that person that made her or him so effective in that role? What was it about the organization that contributed to and supported that persons effectiveness?

From National Park Service Interview Protocol, Bud Orr and Peggy Holman, August 2000 USEFUL CHECKPOINTS 1.Tell a story personal experience/ where you get a value from the checkpoints. What was happening? Who was involved? What made it such a powerful experience? 2a. How can you reinforce the values you got from the checkpoints in your daily life? 2b. What would you like the checkpoints to be converted to in order to embody the value that you got? From AI Workshop in Ramallah, June 25-27, 2004 Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 21 More Examples For Mental Health Provider, merger process TEAMWORK Working together as a team in vital to the success of Compass Health. The quality of our services depends on how we support each other, within workgroups, across areas of the organization and among all the different staff groups. This requires faith in one another, honest, respectful and open communication, and a sense of unity among us. Can you tell me about a time at ________ when you had an exceptional experience of team support and cooperation between diverse individuals or groups and what made that incredible spirit of cooperation possible? What would we need to do as individuals or as an organization to have that same level of team support occur every single time diverse groups of people got together? QUALITY CARE/SERVICE The heart of any healing organization is providing quality care and service to our clients. Especially in these turbulent time, we must hold steady in our commitment to be responsive, compassionate and client-focused in our care.

Please tell me about an experience when, even in a challenging or limiting environment, you were able to give extraordinarily responsive and compassionate care or service to a client. What resources within yourself and your environment did you call forth? What was it about the care you gave that was most helpful to the client? What is your vision for how we can expand our ability to give exemplary care in our community? Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 22 A Sample AI Process Form Design Team Define the purpose of the work Identify participants Hold planning session with microcosm of the system to: * Experience AI * Identify topics * Draft protocol (with LOTS of support) * Refine process specifics Conduct paired interviews Uncover the positive core (in groups of 4 to 6 people)

Uncover the positive core in the whole Inquire Imagine Internalize & Integrate Act Follow Up In groups of 6 to 8, imagine a desired future that goes beyond words (e.g., art, skits) Share dreams Identify the resonant themes Draft agreements grounded in the best of what is and reach towards the best of what is imagined (grow from individual aspirations) Cluster agreements Adopt agreements Identify actions that bring the agreements to life

Continually connect & communicate Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 23 The Emergent Field Listen & follow your heart Attractive questions open for divergence Hope ire s De Connect & reflect together Asp i ns ratio s m ea

r D Peggy Holman, [email protected] INDIVIDUAL Discovery of Emergen ce: the personal is universal COLLECTIVE Emergence Ange isi r C r s Conflic t ar e F r

fo e y v in coherent, e tConverge k i l lo a i T ib epurposeful action s /w n u o o p y s re hat w Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 24 The Appreciative Organization A system that consistently achieves what is most important to it, individually and collectively by continually increasing its capacity for emergence through people caring for themselves, others and the whole

in service to a meaningful purpose Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 25 The Four D Process Discovery What gives life? (the best of what is) APPRECIATING Destiny How to empower, learn and adjust/improvise? SUSTAINING Dream Affirmative Topic Choice What might be? (what is the world calling for) ENVISIONING IMPACT

Design Cooperrider, David and Diana Whitney, Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Revolution in Change, The Change Handbook, Holman, Peggy and Tom Devane, eds., Berrett-Koehler, 1999. Peggy Holman, [email protected] What should be--the ideal? COCONSTRUCTING Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 26 Be the change you want to see in the world - Gandhi Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 27 Resources Appreciative Inquiry Commons A worldwide portal devoted to the fullest sharing of academic resources and practical tools on Appreciative Inquiry and the rapidly growing discipline of positive change. This site is a resource for you and many of us--leaders of change, scholars, students, and business managers--and it is proudly hosted by Case Western Reserve University's Weatherhead School of Management. Appreciative Inquiry Listserv This online community of practitioners is generous with stories, questions and answers. The Appreciative Inquiry Discussion List is hosted by the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah. Jack Brittain is the list administrator. For subscription information, go to: The Power of Appreciative Inquiry: A Practical Guide to Positive Change, Diana Whitney and Amanda TrostenBloom, Berrett-Koehler, 2003. Newly released, well written, informative and practical book useful to anyone interested in AI in organisations. The Appreciative Inquiry Summit: A Practitioner's Guide for Leading Large-Group Change, James Ludema et al, Berrett-Koehler, 2003. A practical guide to the AI summit. Positive Image, Positive Action: The Affirmative Basis of Organizing, David L. Cooperrider.

A classic article on the essential thinkning underpinning AI. Collaborating for Change: Appreciative Inquiry, David Cooperrider and Diana Whitney, Berrett-Koehler, 2000. A small and useful guide to AI presented by two of its founders. Peggy Holman, [email protected] Steve Cato, [email protected] Page 28

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