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Georgina Noakes will lead an interactive workshop on how we can use the approach called Appreciative Inquiry (AI) to bring about positive change.

The difference between the models of problem-solving and appreciative inquiry can be described as the difference between a visit to the doctor to have an ailment investigated and a visit to a careers coach to discuss future directions.

The originators of appreciative inquiry - Professors David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva – liken the process of traditional problem-solving to the process followed by a medical practitioner. First identify and describe the symptoms, then work through the potential underlying causes. These then suggest possible remedies which can be assessed, prioritised and implemented in a treatment plan.

In contrast, appreciative inquiry (AI) uses what is often called the “4D” model, which consists of a positive cycle consisting of Discovering – Dreaming – Designing – and Deploying. To provide an alternative acronym, this involves ‘Appreciating’ what works well, ‘Envisioning’ what could be, ‘Discussing’ what can be done and ‘Innovating’ new approaches.

“Don’t think about a blue elephant”. Neuro-Linguistic Programming uses this example to illustrate how counter-productive it is to try to achieve something by doing its opposite. AI suggests that organisations get good at what they focus on, and if they tend to focus on bad things and failures, then that can serve to reinforce the negatives. In contrast, AI encourages its users to think about what works and to use motivators like hope, creativity, imagination, excitement to foster positive change. The stories that are told by the participants create both current reality and future potential.

Georgina Noakes, the founder and director of Brightside Leadership & Coaching Consultancy will be leading a participative workshop at Cranleigh Arts Centre on the evening of 15th October. She will take Fellows through the stages of the process, showing how initiatives and organisations can be built by focusing on what works and how strengths and positive attributes can be used to create a virtuous circle of improvement.

Cranleigh Arts Centre itself embodies this principle. It was a redundant Victorian building until it was positively reimagined as an art gallery, performance and rehearsal space, cinema, theatre and community café, so we are hoping that our surroundings will also contribute to the creative nature of this event.

Non-Fellows are also welcome to attend and attendance if free but booking is required.

7.00 pm, Thursday 15th October 2015
Cranleigh Arts Centre, 1 High Street, Cranleigh, GU6 8AS

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