Practical Appreciative Inquiry

Starts: 3 July 2022 for 5 weeks

  Book before 3 June to save £100 GBP!  

Get started using Appreciative Inquiry confidently with teams and small groups

Discover a practical, scalable process that you can use to:

  • Structure a team coaching session that will change thinking and generate results
  • Quickly get diverse groups talking freely to each other
  • Get everyone collaborating on creating a shared vision
  • Unleash the creativity of everyone in the team to generate new ideas
  • Get from vision to action plan in less than two hours, with an engaging, participative method that involves the whole team

What’s in this online course?

"It was a fantastic course. Andy facilitated our learning ensuring we came away with knowledge and tools that we could immediately use in our consultancy and leadership coaching client work."
Rita J Bailey
Coach,Facilitator,Mediator, MBTI Practitioner, UK
"I wanted to learn more about the AI approach and use it in my teams/organisations work. Andy's experience, the examples, the materials - everything just added to the blend nicely.
The pace of the course was just right for me. The diverse group was also a big plus.
I really liked the holistic approach - Appreciative Inquiry can be used to shift mindsets & approach to life."
Shabih Zaidi
Consultant Anthropologist, Executive Leadership Coach, Facilitator & Trainer, Switzerland
"I truly enjoyed this course and highly recommend it. I see this is an inclusive, creative approach to problem solving. As we are now facing defining what the future of work from home and in office interaction will look like and the effect it will have on culture and results, this process will prove to be very beneficial, allowing our teams to help design the roadmap to success. "
Rebekah Hogan
President, MarkahVida - Talent Optimization and Strategy Alignment Consulting for Small to Mid-Size Businesses, USA
"The sessions were dynamic and we were able to put the theory into practice as well as share insights with others on the course.
Each week, Andy added new layers of information from all our questions by adding more and more to the LMS he uses.
Andy has also offered post-learning support to those of us who need it."
Sarah Setterfield
Coach and Facilitator, UK

Why the world needs more Appreciative Inquiry facilitators

If, like me, you work with teams to help them improve their performance, you know that they are under increasing pressure to produce quick results.

Pressure makes people narrow their focus right down to achieving targets.

Unfortunately, it also shows up any weaknesses in the team.

The focus on ‘getting results yesterday’ often means relationships within the team are neglected, leading to mistrust, cynicism and blame culture.

The more this happens, the more it shuts down trust, openness to new ideas, and creative thinking – the very things that the team needs to find new solutions.

As a change agent, this can be frustrating. You know that the people in the team can do better, if they weren’t holding themselves back by lack of trust and poor communication.

But getting hard-pressed team members to trust each other more and communicate better isn’t easy – especially if they resent any time spent on this as a distraction from hitting their deadlines.

So as a coach, facilitator, and trainer, I was always looking for more effective ways of coaching and engaging teams.

When I came across Appreciative Inquiry – a leading-edge method for getting people to focus on what’s working and do more of it to get better results – I knew I had found that more effective way.

Each time I used Appreciative Inquiry, I was amazed by how quickly it could:

  • Dissolve cynicism
  • Get normally reserved people to drop their defences and open up to each other
  • Enable team members (and their bosses, and customers) to have structured conversations about where things are now, and how they could be improved – without it turning into a whinge-fest.

I’ll confess, it took me a long time to get confident using Appreciative Inquiry. As it was usually presented, there was a lot of academic language, and it wasn’t always easy to see how to translate the theory into practical, step by step actions.

Gradually, I gained experience in using the method, with participants ranging from prison officers and apprentice engineers to business owners and elected representatives.

I got plenty of practice in how to explain Appreciative Inquiry to all kinds of people in a business-friendly way, without the alienating jargon.

About ten years ago I started teaching a two-day Practical Appreciative Inquiry course to show other coaches, trainers and business owners how to get started with Appreciative Inquiry.

Many of the participants who have taken that course told me that they had read up on Appreciative Inquiry, maybe even taken some training in it, but they needed confidence about putting it in to action.

They needed to know that they’re doing it ‘right’, about when to use it and when not, and how to apply Appreciative Inquiry when they are working in cynical, negatively oriented corporate cultures.

From what the participants on that ‘offline’ version of the course have told me, and from how they’ve been using Appreciative Inquiry since completing the course, I know that it’s possible to give you everything you need to start using the method with confidence in a short time.

And from the many online Practical Appreciative Inquiry courses that I’ve run since 2019, and from what previous participants have reported back, I know that coaches, trainers and change agents like you can take what they’ve learned in the online course and start applying AI in the real world. 

"Andy cleverly used technology and we had meaningful breakout sessions despite it being online.
He was also very committed to the success of the participants.
Even after the closure of the online course, he availed himself to walk us through our preparations and shared ideas on how else to make a session better."
Lily Koh
Solution Focused Coach, Singapore
"What I needed was some hands-on experience with the process of AI.
During the course, Andy provided exercises for us to tackle in smaller break-out groups. These gave me what I was looking for.
Now, having experienced the process for myself, I am much more confident in describing it to others and facilitating my own sessions.
I endorse and recommend the program because of Andy’s practical approach to learning."
Paul Kimmerling
Consultant, Coach, and Facilitator, USA
"I had the pleasure of joining Andy’s Appreciative Inquiry course and he’s a pro. It was a great opportunity to connect with others who are keen to learn more about how we can bring AI into our work. A fascinating course well delivered!"
Colette Reilly
Life & Leadership Coach helping Change Makers Unleash their Brilliance in Life, Home & Business, Scotland
"Andy ensured that we understood what type of scenarios AI was applicable for, and with engaging and interactive presentations broke down the jargon with practical real world examples. The confidence I gained through attending Andy’s course has re-invigorated my passion for improvement.
Alexandra Robinson
Alexandra Robinson
Senior Financial Analyst, Jaguar Land Rover, UK

What's In The Course?

The aim of the Practical Appreciative Inquiry course is to give you everything you need to get started using Appreciative Inquiry with teams and small groups, even if you’ve never used Appreciative Inquiry before.

The curriculum goes like this:

Pre-Study: Intro to Appreciative Inquiry, where it came from, why it works, Principles, and the 5-D format (Definition, Discover, Dream, Design, and Delivery or Destiny)

Week 1: The ‘Definition’ stage: how to craft Affirmative Topic wording, a quick way to ‘flip’ problem statements into Affirmative Topics, a checklist of characteristics for successful Affirmative Topics, how to acknowledge ‘negatives’ and move beyond them, and what to do when it’s hard to get the topic wording right.

Week 2: How to facilitate the Discovery stage, and how to conduct successful Appreciative Interviews (formats, how to craft questions, what interviewers need to know)

Week 3: How to facilitate the Dream stage, formats for building a shared vision, how to encourage the ‘non-creative’ participant

Week 4: How to facilitate the Design stage, how to ensure quiet/introverted participants are heard, formats for getting from Dream to Delivery

Week 5: How to facilitate the Delivery stage, the Fishbone/Swim Lanes format for quick, inclusive planning, when (and when not) to use Appreciative Inquiry, review of course experience.

On top of the lessons, you also get:

  • Recordings of each lesson, in case you miss one or want to refer back to it
  • A one to one coaching session to help you plan your first Appreciative Inquiry implementation
  • Access to a private online group, where you can connect with fellow students
  • The AI Toolkit that gives you step by step instructions for how to conduct each stage, example session agendas from AI meetings that I’ve facilitated, what kind of art materials to use, etc.

The course now includes 33 learning-packed instructional videos (also available as audio and transcripts) covering every stage of the Appreciative Inquiry 5D cycle, to view at your own pace so you can back up the learning you get from the live calls and have a reference any time you need it in the future

"I took Andy's Practical Appreciative Inquiry course and found it to one of the best courses that I have taken online.
I found his knowledge of the subject extended far beyond "book" learning and offered insights not normally found in the average instructor.
I left the course confident that I could not only apply Appreciative thinking in my own work but adequate enough to get others started down that path."
Joe Dager
Business Development, Action Research, Customer Interviews, USA
"A clear and comprehensive course on Appreciative Enquiry expertly delivered - what more could you want?   The mix of theory, explanation and interactive exercises provides a comprehensive learning experience enlivened by Andy’s experience and enthusiasm.
I now have a clear understanding of how to facilitate AI learning and the confidence to do so. "
Jefferson Cann
International Leadership and Performance Coach, Speaker and Facilitator, UK
"Andy's practical Appreciative Inquiry course was a great way to go into more depth about the practicalities of using this model. What set the course apart was the collection of extensive resources he offers participants on this course, from videos to downloadable conversation templates, articles and more.
Andy has a depth of knowledge, a true passion for the process, a welcoming manner and a capacity to explain things simply and clearly to ensure people can use these skills."
Charlotte Wiseman
Leadership and wellbeing consultant - Positive organizational psychology consultant - Mental Health First Aid Trainer, UK

What do I need to know?

Dates: The Practical Appreciative Inquiry online course is a programme of pre-study (using videos, audio, and documents) followed by 5 group coaching calls that meet online via Zoom for about 90 minutes each Sunday from 3 July, along with weekly action assignments. The final call will be on 31 July.

Call times:  09:00 (9AM) UK time (check here for how this time works in your time zone)

Group size: This is a small-group course to ensure you get enough individual attention. I will be accepting a maximum of 12 participants

Support: You also get a one to one coaching session with me after the course to help you plan your first implementation of Appreciative Inquiry. Previous students have said they have found this extremely valuable.

Each live lesson will include the opportunity to ask questions, and of course you can email me with your questions in between lessons and in comments on the course platform.

Your commitment: Pre-study will be around two hours at most. There will be some assignments in between each session, with a time commitment of around an hour per week.

Another big upside when you participate in a ‘live’ course like this is that you get much more access to me than there would be in the more traditional kind of online course where you only learn by watching videos. And it still keeps the big advantages of online courses, that you can attend it from anywhere in the world, without travel or accommodation costs, and you have a video of each lesson that you can review as many times as you want.

How much is it?

"The online nature of the course worked very well. It fitted my need for a course that wouldn’t require me to travel and would fit in with my various work and personal demands.
I didn’t feel I lost out compared to an in-person course because it was a relatively small group, we were all on video together and there was a lot of interaction and chat. We were all spread around the globe but for the duration of the sessions it didn’t feel like it!
I really enjoyed the course and feel confident enough to begin using what I have learned with groups in the coming months."
Aoife Collins
Coaching and Consulting, Ireland
I’ve been running the ‘offline’ version of the course for £595 GBP per place. But you can book your place on this online course with direct access to me for only £497 GBP. You can book with confidence as I’ll give you a full refund if you’re not satisfied by the end of the course.

How do I book?

As it’s a small-group course (maximum 12 participants per group), email me first at andy@coachingleaders.co.uk to make sure there’s still a place available.

Then click this button to book your place:


Trust in the model, and in Andy's clear explanation of how to use it.

Rated 5 out of 5
February 24, 2022

It works. After a few weeks expert training from Coaching Leaders, I managed to lead an AI workshop with a diverse group of 30 representatives from across Jaguar Land Rover Finance to develop a new Vision for our team of circa 700 people.
We listened to each other, dreams were dreamed, everyone had fun and we managed to reach a consensus in half a day. The fact that everyone felt like their contribution played a part in coming to our joint conclusion really resonated with the team.
Trust in the model… as you told us…. it works!

Avatar for Alexandra Robinson
Alexandra Robinson

Appreciative Inquiry - Answering Some of My Prayers

Rated 5 out of 5
November 21, 2021

Until I joined and participated in the recent course I had been ‘self-taught’, and although I did not think I was doing anything wildly incorrect, the course has really helped me to develop my AI practice. This has mainly been in the areas of planning and increasing my focus on asking better questions. I have noticed that my facilitation skills have also improved. I would say this is highly recommended, not just for the course content and delivery but also for the additional resources/materials, and the connections in the media platforms.

Avatar for Brian Hunter Young
Brian Hunter Young

Response from Coaching Leaders

Thanks Brian!

Informative, practical immersion into the world of Appreciative Inquiry

Rated 5 out of 5
September 23, 2021

I had a great experience taking Andy’s Practical Appreciative Inquiry course. There are plenty of Internet resources available on this well established methodology. But what I needed was a “safe space” to affirm my understanding. To ask (a lot of!) questions, and bring some nuance and insight to all that I’ve read.
I think the most important word to lean on in this course is “Practical” (which is what I valued most about it). Andy and the course help you to get your arms around the concepts so you feel confident in applying them. Whether you are immersing yourself for the first time, like I was, or needing to fine tune (we had both newbies and very experienced practitioners in my group), this course provides an accessible way to get a clear-eyed understanding of Appreciative Inquiry.

Avatar for Ariel G.
Ariel G.

Response from Coaching Leaders

Thanks Ariel – you probably are the record-holder for most questions asked, but they were great questions and I learned a lot from responding to them!

Review this course

(Note: only reviews from genuine graduates of the course will be published)

Coaching Leaders Ltd | Registered in England No: 03445765

Registered Office: 6 Station View, Hazel Grove, Stockport, England, SK7 5ER

Email: andy@coachingleaders.co.uk

Phone +44 (0) 7967 591 313

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