Category Archives: Featured

What Makes the Center for Appreciative Inquiry Unique?

For over 25 years, we have delivered workshops tailored to meet the rapidly changing needs of leaders in today’s global economy. Our strategy involves developing individuals, groups and organizations into true “centers of excellence” by cultivating their collective strengths and appreciating the value that is present in all human systems (large or small). By utilizing the existing talents, strengths and resources, our clients are able to connect to their positive core in ways that heighten their energy, sharpen their vision, and inspire action for positive, sustainable change.

How are we different?

  • We are relationship-focused. We believe the success of any human endeavor is dependent upon the relationships between those involved. We value each person and strive to develop a rapport, trust, and understanding with all of our clients by investing time and energy into understanding each client, their business, and their aspirations.
  • Trainings are small and intimate. The size of each of our trainings vary based on the location of the event, but rarely exceed 24 participants. Our intimate training sessions allow for extensive interaction between our trainer(s) and participants – allowing each participant to receive more assistance with individual needs.
  • Intensive and experiential. “We remember best what we experience. We understand best what we identify with. We learn best by doing.” We are aware of the importance of personal experience in the retention of learning. This is the underlying principle used in all of our workshops.
  • Support. Our intimate training sessions create the perfect environment for networking, motivation, and support with other workshop participants. We encourage participants to continue to share their challenges and experiences with one another even after our trainings have concluded. Support from others can provide the strength needed to continue on the path of positive, sustainable change.
  • Infused with Appreciative Inquiry. Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a collaborative, strengths-based approach to both personal and organizational development that is proving to be highly effective in thousands of organizations and communities around the world. It is a way of bringing about change that shares leadership and learning, fully engaging everyone in the process. AI empowers our participants to create the processes they wish to use in order to put belief into practice and acquire their goals.
  • Mentoring included. To ensure the successful implementation of the skill sets taught during our trainings, our trainer(s) make themselves readily available to answer questions, share knowledge, and provide on-going support and encouragement long after the training has concluded.
  • Certification. Many of our workshops include certification – at no additional cost to you. Certification demonstrates to your customers, competitors, suppliers, staff and investors that you use industry-respected best practices.
  • Low cost. Evolving positively in today’s changing environment requires that we constantly improve and build upon our skill sets. By providing our workshops at a low cost, we hope to attract more individuals, groups, and organizations who are expected “to do more with less”. We now offer group rates that provide additional savings on top of our already reduced workshop prices.
  • Expertise. Each of our trainers have a strong commitment to the theory and practice of their subject area — bringing a balance of education, consulting, and on-the-job experience to all of our trainings.

What is Appreciative Inquiry?

Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is a way of being and seeing. It is both a worldview and a process for facilitating positive change in human systems, e.g., organizations, groups, and communities. Its assumption is simple: Every human system has something that works right–things that give it life when it is vital, effective, and successful. AI begins by identifying this positive core and connecting to it in ways that heighten energy, sharpen vision, and inspire action for change. As AI consultant Bernard J. Mohr says, “Problems get replaced with innovation as conversations increasingly shift toward uncovering the organization’s (or group’s, or community’s) positive core.”

AI was pioneered in the 1980s by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva, two professors at the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. AI consultants around the world are increasingly using an appreciative approach to bring about collaborative and strengths-based change in thousands of profit and nonprofit organizations and communities in more than 100 countries.

Who Uses Appreciative Inquiry?

Beyond being an organizational development process, Appreciative Inquiry becomes a generative way to energize the creative best in people and their organizations. Appreciative Inquiry provides leaders with a methodology to focus on the positive instead of the negative.

Rather than focusing mainly on problems,
Appreciative Inquiry elicits SOLUTIONS

Clients that use Appreciative Inquiry include:

  • Corporations
  • Colleges and Universities
  • K-12 schools
  • Government Agencies
  • Non-profit Organizations
  • Community Development


  • Accreditation
  • Attitude and morale change
  • Brand and image building
  • Collaborative alliances, joint ventures, and partnerships
  • Communications
  • Conflict resolution and mediation
  • Customer service
  • Dialogue
  • Diversity initiatives
  • Employee development
  • Evaluation to valuation of performance systems
  • Focus groups
  • Generative benchmarking
  • Human resource practices, staffing orientation
  • Innovations toward the ideal organization
  • Knowledge management
  • Labor-management
  • Leadership and management development
  • Meetings
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Mission and goals development
  • Organization and structure design
  • Organizational culture change and transformation
  • Performance management
  • Process and method design
  • Quality improvement and assurance
  • Relationship building
  • Safety
  • Self-studies
  • Strategic planning
  • Student success
  • Surveys
  • Team development
  • Vision and values clarification
  • Workplace environment
  • Work process redesign


What are the Benefits of Using an Appreciative Inquiry Model?

Appreciative Inquiry is an invitation to an imaginative and fresh perception of individuals, groups, and organizations and the processes through which they change. Below are potential outcomes of incorporating Appreciative Inquiry in your personal and professional life:

  • Change at the speed of imagination – rapid, sustainable, transformative change
  • Change in the basic orientation from problem-focused to possibility-focused
  • Clarified or enhanced sense of identity
  • Renewal of energy, hope, and motivation and commitment
  • Increased curiosity and sense of vitality
  • Improved working relations/conflict resolution