Change is everywhere and whether from incoming governments or new management teams, one of the most ubiquitous refrains is:
‘We must be radical’
But what does radical really mean?
Let’s get to the root of this (ahem)
Getting to the root of a meaning in English, often takes us back to Latin. This is no exception, and what we unearth is the Latin word ‘radix’. Radix gives us ‘radical’ and also ‘radish’ the common, peppery and delicious root vegetable. Radix means ‘root’.
Picture credit: La Grande Farmers’ Market
A radical solution is one that takes us to the root of the problem, or back to basics, you might say. So truly radical solutions should not involve an over-throw of what has gone before; they should build on the best of what already exists.
Appreciative Inquiry, or AI as it is sometimes called, is formal methodology for discovering the best of what already exists, and using it as a basis for designing effective change. It has powerful links with Positive Psychology and Positive Organisational Psychology, and and rejects the language of ‘problems’ in favour of ‘possibilities’ to be explored.
The AI process has four Steps.
A systematic effort to discover the memories, stories and knowledge that captures the best of what an organisation has done and is doing.
Make things happen. Invite others to follow, inspiring them with the dream and empowering them with the design.
While we wait
… for the Appreciative Inquiry Pocketbook, The Appreciative Inquiry Commons is the principal resource for information, ideas and tools for this extremely powerful change management technology.