If you are looking for an accessible introduction to AI, here is a quick 10-minute Appreciative Inquiry video intro by Jacqueline Kelm. It’s a big subject to squeeze into 10 minutes but she does a great job!
Only one thing I would add – in the Omni Hotel case study that Jacqueline mentions in the video, key members of the hotel staff are sent to a 5 star hotel to study how it does customer service and bring the knowledge back. You often see a similar method used on ‘business makeover’ TV shows like ‘Mary Queen of Shops’ and ‘The Hotel Inspector’ (these are UK TV shows – if you’re reading this outside the UK I imagine you can think of similar shows). While it’s a great method, it’s not the norm for most Appreciative Inquiry processes.
Instead, most Appreciative Inquiry interventions focus on finding what’s working, what inspires, and what encourages success within an organisation – which is useful, because it costs a lot less in terms of time and money.
You don’t have to organise huge, set-piece AI processes either – even something as small as inviting people to share successes at the start of your team meetings will make a difference to their mood and motivation, and so improve your team’s thinking skills and problem-solving ability.
If you’re intrigued by the Appreciative Inquiry approach, and would like to get all the tools and processes you need to get started using it in your organisation, I’m running a two-day, small group Practical Appreciative Inquiry training in Sutton Coldfield (in the middle of the UK) on 18-19 March 2003. There’s been a lot of interest in places, so grab yours while there are still some available!
(and please do check out the dynamite testimonial in the comments at the end of the page!)