A System moves in the direction in which it investigates

Appreciative Inquiry is a new emerging form of transformation for organizations based on a simple premise: all organizations grow in the direction they investigate, to where they put their attention and energy in a repetitive manner.

If we put our attention in detecting problems these tend to grow and multiply and can become even more entrenched.

It is the paradigm of deficit, of what we do NOT HAVE.

But when what you study are the achievements, the strengths with which these have been produced, the best moments, the peak experiences, these will multiply and in some manner flourish.

Let us imagine that the functioning of your team, in your opinion can be improved, and that there are certain conflicts amongst members of your team.

To tackle this from a deficit view point will lead towards the following: You will gather your team and ask, what is not working in this team? Why are we not performing better as a team?  What is creating the conflicts and who is responsible? How can we resolve all these problems?

To tackle this situation in an appreciative fashion will lead each person to relate the following: Tell me your best story working as a team, a moment when the quality of your work was very high and you felt very engaged. What did you and the others do? What strengths and values were put into play? What internal and external factors made all this possible?  What would this team achieve and how would it perform if it carried out everything that took us to success more often and in a better fashion?

It is the paradigm of Abundance, precisely what we DO WANT and what we DO HAVE.

Which of the two do you think works better? From the deficit viewpoint you surely have already done so before. Change the way in which you change and try Appreciative Inquiry.

Appreciative Inquiry instead of trying to detect, analyse and resolve problems focuses on: define what you want to achieve, inquire into your strengths, aspirations and best practices in this subject and from there define a future based on aligning strengths, which are always greater, more motivating and more stretching than the goals. In effect, you reach and go further.

Appreciative Inquiry is a philosophy and a methodology of change based on strengths. It appreciates the best of what is: the strengths, the resources, the opportunities instead of trying to minimise the weaknesses and problems which get in the way of our objectives. It focuses on exploring and discovering the moments of excellence through inquiry and visualising new potentials and opportunities from collective intelligence.

It is more than merely a tool, more than a methodology. It is a way of thinking and acting, a philosophy of organizational change.

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