Appreciative Inquiry

What is Appreciative Inquiry?

While in a meeting of our Committee of Ministry (COM), Leigh Zeitz made some comments on Appreciative Inquiry. The rest of the committee thought that it was a useful explanation and asked him to write it down and share it with the rest of the group. Here it is:

Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is defined as "The coevolutionary search for the best in people, their organizations, and the relevant world around them. In its broadest focus, it involves systematic discovery of what gives “life” to a living system when it is most alive, most effective, and most constructively capable in economic, ecological, and human terms" (Active Inquiry Commons)

It is about more than just looking at facts. It involves exploring emotions. The process incorporates asking people about their most rewarding experience with an organization. Once these experiences are identified, then it is up to the AI explorers to determine the conditions that created those positive events. These conditions are positive because it is what we do well and it is important to do what is necessary to repeat the experience.

In our congregation, we need to search for our strengths. What do we do well that satisfies and supports our present 152 members and all of our guest who walk through the front door and stick around. Once we have identified these strengths, then we need to acknowledge how it is accomplished so that we can "keep it going."

Leigh Zeitz

Here are some resources where you might find out more about Appreciative Inquiry:

Appreciative Inquiry: What is it?
Appreciative Inquiry Commons

Appreciative Inquiry - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Wikipedia definition and lots of links

Appreciative Inquiry
Free Management Library

Appreciative Inquiry in the U.S. Navy

Here is another good resource, What is Appreciative Inquiry? <http://www.thinbook.com/docs/doc-whatisai.pdf> added by Christine

Last year's questions:1. What do you see as your committee’s ministry?
2. How are you successfully meeting your ministry?
3. What could help you be more successful in meeting your ministry?
4. Do you value what you do within the ministry through this committee?

Possible new questions to use for Appreciative InquiryDiscover - 1. What is your Board/Committee/Group doing well and how does it contribute to our ministry? or What drew you to and keeps you at UUSBHC?
Dream - 2. How could we do this even better or more? or How could you get even more from UUSBHC?
Design - 3. What would better or more look like?
Deliver - 4. Let's do it! How will we get it done?
Posted just now

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Contact me if you have any questions about using this page. zeitz@uni.edu