More about Appreciative Inquiry:
In every human situation, something works
Doing more of what works is the key driver for Appreciative Inquiry, as opposed to trying to do less of what we know doesn’t work. Acting from the assumption that something is working makes it more likely that we will find that something. This is important because expectations – particularly from people in authority – influence performance. (See the Pygmalion effect.)
Focusing on the positive influences the outcome
Focussing on the positive has been found to be extremely effective, for example, in sports psychology. There is plenty of research to back up the idea that focusing on positive aspects makes a successful outcome more likely. (See the Expectancy Effect; the placebo effect: the value of positive emotions; and the psychology of luck)
Rediscovering our past achievements will affect our future
We have more confidence in our future, when we carry forward the achievements of the past. If we do not take account of what is already good in the current situation, there is a danger that we will lose what works already. It makes sense therefore to start the change process, as AI does, with what is valuable and what is already working well, and to base change on doing more of what works.