Appreciative Inquiry, Way of Life

Though this has impacted me several times and through multiple avenues, I can’t seem to be impressed any lesser every time it happens again…the fact that assessing any situation through a proactive stance and doing something concrete about challenges and hopes most often than not generates happy and constructive outcomes.

Recently, I spent three months working with a bunch of senior executives of a global corporation. In the last quarter of last year their sales were down, they were developing lesser new products and people in several of their departments were low on energy and low on engagement. Upon probing deeper and conversing with people at multiple levels we sensed a drop in trust levels among the senior management. Though this was barely visible in their behavior and internal communications, it seems that production, sales and even marketing had read between the lines and gotten a whiff of the underlying tremors. The infliction had spread and was slowing down progress and even routine work.


Appreciative Inquiry, Way of LifeWe used a combination of strategies and interventions to heal the underlying tremors and discords. Most all of them were first focused on impressing upon all departments the value of consistent growth through innovation. Followed by small group discussions which were facilitated such to increase personal and corporate alignment. Once the teams and parts of the organization began to understand what needed to be done several creative thinking session were held where cross-functional teams came up with well-defined plans to innovate on people development, process improvement and suggestions on big-picture strategies for growth. Of the scores of plans, a select few will be implemented, deployed.

The miraculous thing about the whole process was that since the dialogues and discussions were held following the Appreciative Inquiry way of life, the fringe benefits and the by product was increased engagement at all levels of the organization. It may not show on the company’s scorecards yet but the energy levels, the open discussions in the hallways and even the number of hi-five’s seemed to have gone up.

In the coming months we will still recoup and run surveys on the actual results and numbers but as of now the senior leadership and most all of us involved feel that what has been done has been done for the better and it is bound to have a long-term positive effect.

9 replies
  1. Rudolph
    Rudolph says:

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  2. says:

    Greetings! Very useful advice within this article!
    It is the little changes which will make the most significant changes.

    Many thanks for sharing!

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