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The University of Adelaide

Appreciative Inquiry

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About the course

Appreciative Inquiry is a managerial method that approaches change with a focus on strengths, as opposed to problems to be solved. The questions we ask are significant.

In this hands-on program participants learn the key to effective change through an Appreciative Inquiry (AI) approach.

This organisational development model, developed in the US, is based on the assumption that questions focus our attention in a particular direction. It proposes there are significant organisational impacts stemming from the types of questions we ask and where they lead us.

By focusing on strengths members of the organisation are motivated to understand and value its culture and make rapid improvements. This course will outline the compelling research underlying AI, and show examples of AI's successful application. You will also gain tools and techniques for shifting organisational focus using the AI approach.

Key learnings

By the end of this program you will be able to:

  • Use tools and techniques for shifting your internal orientation from "what's the problem?" to "what's going well?"
  • Understand effective methodologies for identifying and understanding strengths at all operational levels - from individuals to organisation-wide
  • Implement strategies for utilising AI to drive innovation and creative organisational change - moving from inquiry to implementation
  • Drive organisational change - moving from inquiry to implementation
  • Implement techniques for keeping your people motivated and energised
  • Show a deeper understanding of the importance and power of language in your personal and professional life

Course topics

  • Nature of change
  • Common change theory and models
  • Change and complexity
  • World views and perspectives and change
  • Leadership and change
  • What is Appreciative Inquiry
  • The Appreciative Inquiry Process

Benefits for your organisation

  • Generating organisational momentum by identifying and leveraging strengths, not fixing "problems".
  • Incorporate a positively framed process for creating change. Ensuring the collective focus is on finding the root causes of success and working out how to make greater use of them, creating new energy and knowledge along the way.

Who should attend

Senior executives, managers, professionals and team leaders.

Trust the experts

Lois Whittall

Lois has a working and teaching background in Organisational Development, Human Resource Management and Finance. She has worked in a variety of public and private sector organisations in the UK and Australia in senior management roles. She has also consulted extensively with local and multi-natio...


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