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Our Guide to Appreciative Inquiry & How it Can Benefit Your Business

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In every industry, creating a strategy built on mitigating problem-focused scenarios is a critical part of running a successful business. It impacts the bottom line in various aspects – from the employees’ morale, productivity, and ability to take actionable steps to offer solutions in any given situation. 

Businesses who are looking to transform their approach and cultivate an environment that nurtures collaboration and leadership needs to go about it using the Appreciative Inquiry (AI) approach. 

What is Appreciative Inquiry? 

AI is all about taking steps that draw from positive psychology to improve human systems in various organizations. It focuses on enhancing strengths, while weaknesses are rendered irrelevant as each employee is given a reinforcing role built on their positive qualities. Some ways to apply the Appreciative Inquiry at work include the following: 

Tip #1: Change the Culture’s Perspective 

Many companies tackle a new week by asking the staff the problems they had to face, and what innovative ways they can apply to solve it. While a positive work culture can help employees by giving moral support and aiding their brainstorming sessions when troubleshooting specific issues, AI finds it better to change the perspective altogether by asking about the good things instead of the bad. 

This includes inquiring positively-centered questions like, “What’s the best thing that happened in your department last week?” compared to “What are the challenges you had to face and need to improve on?” 

You’d be surprised that these stories are often unheard and overlooked, making it a gold mine for absorbing valuable information that can help progress your company. 

Tip #2: Provide Diamond Feedback to Promote Micro-Positive Behaviors

Diamond feedback is all about reinforcing positive behavior by reporting on the good deeds and giving praise where it’s due. Now only does it boost their morale, but it also promotes hard work as employees have a clearer idea on which behaviors are given the most attention or value. 

It also shows a clearer picture of what the company needs, along with the reinforcement they need to continue the actions knowing that it will be rewarded. 

Tip #3: Make the Best of What You’ve Got 

When you are experiencing issues with an employee, most managers tend to rely on hiring a new one in hopes of getting a better talent. However, the problem will never be solved if you continue to change your staff and the lack of growth. 

Instead of focusing on the weakness, you can make the best of what you’ve got by looking at individual strengths. Build on their positives so that you can help them achieve better skills, critical thinking, and promote leadership faster by allowing your employees to excel at what they are initially good at. 

The Bottom Line

Instead of trying to “fix what’s wrong,” AI motivates people and builds industry leaders by taking on a supporting role that helps shape behavior by generating new ideas, visions, and giving praise to outcomes that are valued at work. 

Are you looking to develop your training program online course? Or do you want to know how to become a progressive employer? If you’re looking for quality, short courses on developing soft skills for your business, contact us to see how we can improve your leadership, training, management, and human resources skills. 



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