Appreciative Inquiry Essay

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Appreciative Inquiry
Unlike many behavioral approaches to change, AI does not focus on changing people. Instead, it invites people to engage in building the kinds of organizations and communities that they want to work and live in. (Mohy & Watkins, p. 4)
Most Organizational Development theories or tools begin with the presumption that once the human element is on board, then real change can happen. Appreciative Inquiry does the same, but the way of change and the end result may be quite different than other processes. AI presumes that current staff resources are a valuable aspect of determining what change is necessary and how that change should take place. Cooperrider stated that AI was the “…cooperative search for the best in people, their organizations, and the world around them…” (1999, p. 245-261) AI doesn’t focus on the problem. It focuses on the future state. The premise is that current members of the organization are responsible for “Preferred Futuring.” (Jackson, 2006, p. 155)
Appreciative Inquiry (AI) was pioneered in the 1980s by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva. (TCFAI, 2014) Cooperrider was doing doctorial research under Srivastva at Case Westen Reserve University, using the Cleveland Clinic Foundation as the subject. The organization impressed him because of the cooperative way it functioned. When the Clinic Cooperrider was asked to help turn the hotel around. Instead of changing staff or sending them to training. He sent them to a hotel that was an excellent example of the way a hotel should operate. They then were to list all of the positive things they found, only the positives, no negatives. The staff returned energized and with many ideas. Thus AI was born. AI operates on the assumption that ...

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...dvertently eliminate that information that may change some of our practices.
Communication and education is going to be key to the success of this endeavor. This is a change, if we are not clear about the new process to the students and schools, we run the risk of creating confusion. We do not want to create frustration.
The community may not like the change. Many people are resistant to any change. “Perception is everything.” One of the founding principles of our company. We need to focus on ways to improve the way others “feel” about the new division.

We feel that by using AI and enlisting all of the institutional knowledge the University has, we can best assist in this transition. We are encouraged that the University recognizes that this type of growth requires strategic planning and is willing to commit resources to implementing the right way.

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