Building On Strengths When Trying To Make Change

Change is a challenge at the best of times.

Often when it comes to communicating change, leaders focus their attention on problems and consequences.

While there is merit in this approach, there is an alternative.

Appreciative enquiry is one of those alternatives. Rather than placing the emphasis on what is wrong, it starts by positively identifying what works well.

If you think about it this makes a lot of sense. Usually in any process there is more that is working well than there is not working.

The appreciative enquiry approach involves asking structured questions around the following four areas:

Discovery – of what is working well

Dream – where we explore how the successes can be built on and expanded

Design – where we create the plan to implement the dream

Destiny – where we move forward towards the dream

Does it make change easier?

Probably not. At the same time it can have a big impact on motivation and help target change in my view.

Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements works with organisations to improve leadership and team working and support change and improvement.