MovieIcon15h  Appreciative Inquiry at Blue Sky Catering by Jeremy Scrivens: The day I threw away my business diagnostics kit forever in favour of building on what is good.


MovieIcon15h Appreciative Inquiry at SA Mushrooms by Jeremy Scrivens: The story of an Australian Fresh Produce Business that engaged its people on the ground floor to work with owners and the Board to innovate from strengths. So cool – so engaging- so next gen social business.


MovieIcon15h  USAID’s Thought Leaders in Learning Speakers Series by David Cooperrider: David speaks to an audience of international development practitioners on how an Appreciative Inquiry approach to strategic planning can catalyse positive organisational transformation.


MovieIcon15h  Appreciative Inquiry by David Cooperrider:  An overview of Appreciative Inquiry.


MovieIcon15h  Business as an Agent for World Benefit by David Cooperrider:  The sustainability revolution enabled by Appreciative Inquiry


MovieIcon15h  What is Appreciative Inquiry? by Jackie Helm:  Fine overview of Appreciative Inquiry Summits – engaging the whole ‘ecosystem’ to innovate and grow.


MovieIcon15h  Appreciative Inquiry by John Hayes: Good summary of Appreciative Inquiry approach and why it engages people to think about possibilities. 


MovieIcon15h  Fairmont Minerals:  Excellent Example of an Appreciative Inquiry Summit at Fairmont Minerals, the company going on to win a US national sustainability award


MovieIcon15h  Building a Positive Media Culture is the Key to a Sustainable Social Business by Jeremy Scrivens: A look at the 2013 Gallup Global Engagement Report which found that only 13% of people are happy or engaged at work. Those that are happy work in positive social cultures. For social business, building a positive culture is critical.


MovieIcon15h  Four Principles for the Open World by Don Tapscott: Don shows why Principles and Mindset are where we start shaping our social business culture, not technology.  The Principles of social business are the Abundant set of Collaboration, Openness, Sharing & Empowerment


MovieIcon15h  How Social Media Can Make History – TED talk by Clay Shirky: Explores how social media empowers people from consuming information to participation, producing content to enabling new kind of co-operative structures which aid people to create organized groups for innovation.       Media is less and less about crafting a single message to be consumed by individuals, and is now more often a way of sustaining a Culture for convening and supporting groups.


MovieIcon15h  Positive Engagement at Work by Jeremy Scrivens: The Three Types of People at Work; The Contributors, Compliant & Subversives


MovieIcon15h  What the heck is arbejdsglaede!:   The Danish are rated as having the happiest workforce in this world and this is not a coincidence or random: it is a part of a deliberate intent to build a positive, generous and kind culture which creates happiness, engagement and productivity. The Danes have an unpronounceable but unique word for happiness at work which the rest of the world does not have. It is called arbejdsglæde; arbejds meaning work and glaede meaning happy.


MovieIcon15h  Kindness is Free by Tom Peters: Brilliant video by Tom Peters, one of the world’s most notable business thinkers who founded the Excellence movement. For years, Tom argued that Excellence was about hard stuff like outcomes but now the research shows that kindness is the No 1 factor in Excellence and Tom has made the personal conversation; like us!


MovieIcon15h  Leadership & Authority Structure by Ron Heifetz: The pace and scope of change requires Adaptive Leaders who will bring their people or ‘social ecosystem’ together to innovate new ways of doing social good when the old, known ways are no longer working. This requires innovation by engaging those who do the work to come up with the answers; not keep applying what’s known or go to the external experts because they aren’t any with the kind of adaptive change affecting most Enterprises today.


MovieIcon15h  The Day That Bob & Mary Were Liberated to Be Who They Really Are by Thomas ScrivensOnly 13% of the workforce is happy at work. These people are incredibly productive, collaborative and innovative for social business.  You find them working for kind leaders who take the time to identify their natural talents and help them at work to be more of whom they really are. Kind leaders release strengths in individual team members; they capitalise on differences and align these strengths, making weaknesses irrelevant. They don’t waste energy on developing weaknesses or areas of non-talent but rather build on the best that is already there.

Bob and Mary are characters based on real people in an actual organisation in Victoria, Australia. We need more stories like this,


MovieIcon15h  Strengths Based Lean & Six Sigma by David Shaked: Strength-based Lean Six Sigma blends the rigour of process improvement through Lean Six Sigma with the energy, creativity and commitment released through strength-based change using Appreciative Inquiry. Looks to map and extend the root causes of flow, not waste or problems, and fosters innovation beyond continuous improvement. The focus is not moving from Bad to Good but on the Champions business space of Good to Great.




Story Telling


Getting a Business Back in the Black by Mapping & Extending Strengths – Appreciative Inquiry at Fastest Freight by Jeremy Scrivens: The first time we deployed Appreciative Inquiry in an Australian business to look for what worked, rather than the bad stuff. The business used to be profitable but had run into hard times. But rather than look at problems, we instead engaged stakeholders to identify when the company had been profitable, why and then how to restore and build on their best The company returned to profit making.


The Day I Abandoned Business Daignostics & Switched to Extending Strengths – Appreciative Inquiry at Blue Sky Catering by Jeremy Scrivens: My life changed forever in shaping the business conversation when someone asked ‘don’t we ever do anything well around here?’


Switching the Business Conversation From Problems to Possibilities by Jeremy Scrivens: Industrial Age managers focus on fixing problems, whereas social business leaders in today’s global world engage their ecosystem to imagine possibilities and co-create them.


Mapping & Extending Kindness at Freshest Fruits by Jeremy Scrivens: A defining moment for us when we deployed Appreciative Inquiry in an Australian wholesale market business and discovered Random Acts of Kindness to be at the pinnacle of business success, customer engagement and staff happiness. We then worked to install Australia’s first Culture of Kindness in a real business and the Enterprise has been one of the happiest and most profitable in a really tough industry

The Story of a Kind Leader Who Engaged His People to Contribute by Jeremy Scrivens: How an Australian fresh produce enterprise CEO saw the potential in his people and invited them to co-create a meaningful future story for social good in an Appreciative Inquiry Summit – ground breaking as the culture shifted from fear to trust and compliance to creativity.


Aligning Business Strategy to Release Natural Talents at Creative Accounting by Jeremy Scrivens:  Creative Accounting Group had built a great business around business tax services to niche clients. But owner, Martin, decided to go into the personal tax business as well, after all, Creative Accounting Group was a tax business – right? Then the problems started, as his people became disengaged with the new move. We deployed the Natural Talents DNA Profiling within the team and discovered a secret that turned everything around for Martin and his team.


Fastest Freight: A Story of Positive Logistics by Jeremy Scrivens: Fastest Freight used to be profitable but was in the red. I was asked to find the problem but instead asked FF”s best customers when had they experienced exceptional service and this question changed everything. Mapping the best experiences of service flows for customers identified Random Acts of Kindness (RAOK) at the core of excellence. We brought the positive stories into an Appreciative Inquiry Summit with all staff, who created a Positive Culture and deployed this culture in their customer processes.


Strengths Based Business Process Innovation at Big Mountain Shire Council by Jeremy Scrivens: One of the first deployments in Australia of the new strengths based approach to improving business processes and engaging happiness in staff and customers. Big Mountain Shire won an Innovations award for this work.


Mapping & Extending Strengths in Business Processes at Blue Sky Catering by Jeremy Scrivens: Another Australian example of the use of the New Gen strengths based approach to improving processes in an Enterprise in order to experience emotional flow in work. 1st Gen Lean & Business Process Management mapped the journey of the product or the service but 2nd Gen Strengths based approaches map peak experiences of emotional flow and happiness and engage people to extend what works in order to become the norm.




Papers & Articles

Social Media – Appreciative Inquiry Series – 4 Posts by Jeremy Scrivens: The series covers the background to Appreciate Inquiry, the application in a case study and how internal enterprise social networks can help to engage the power of AI to innovate in social business.


The Concentration Effect of Effect of Strengths by David Cooperrider: 10 Year Longitudinal Study of How Appreciative Inquiry (AI) Summits have transformed four businesses, two of which have won National Sustainability awards. David goes into the experience of engaging ‘the whole system’ in the room to innovate.


Engaging Potential in the Construction Industry by Aligning Strengths by Jeremy Scrivens & Craig Skipsey: Paper exploring the potential to deploy Appreciative Inquiry in the Australian Construction Industry to bring master builders and sub-contractors together as equal partners to collaborate and co-create approaches to planning and delivering high quality construction projects.


How Enterprise Social Enables Appreciative Inquiry by Jeremy Scrivens: Appreciative Inquiry seeks to unlock innovation and bring creativity to the forefront – focusing on strengths to transform organisations to a high-engagement high-commitment workforce. Our guest blogger Jeremy Scrivens describes this in detail in his recent posts. Jeremy suggests a new focus whereby managers develop an eye that can appreciate and surface the good and the possible in order to bring about the elevation and combination of strengths to the customer and the world. So how can enterprise social networks play an enabling role in helping achieve the transformation goals of Appreciative Inquiry?


Positive Leadership at Social Scale by Mike Green:  So what’s motivating your people? What thoughts are keeping your people up at night? Our access to endless information and socialization has given new life to age-old questions. Why am I here? What impact do I want to have on my people? Our success doesn’t lie in becoming more interesting or disruptive. What we need is purpose and to help people realize their purpose. To know your purpose as a leader is to know who you are. 


How Managers Build an Authentic Team and Ecosystem with Social by Jeremy Scrivens:  Building an authentic team and ecosystem, who collaborate as a living community and are connected by social media, is the new work for the emerging social manager. But how many of our managers are equipped to take this journey to new ways of working through collaborative networks of aligned talents?


Why the Winners in Business are Taking Time to Build a Positive and Kind Social Culture by Jeremy Scrivens: The fortunate companies who have high numbers of Contributors in their workforces are set up to take advantage of the new social business and social network technologies because the Contributors are wired for collaboration. And it is not a Generation X or Millennial characteristic; it is a question of company culture.


Social Media: The Opportunity to Engage People to Contribute by Jeremy Scrivens:  Explores the role of social media in engaging employees in positive conversations about contributing to social good. Highly engaged contributors are worth six times more to the bottom line of their social business than their non-engaged or Compliant colleagues according to the Gallup Group’s recently released comprehensive State of the Workplace survey of employee engagement across 140 countries.


‘We Can’t Get On Together with Suspicious Minds’ by Jeremy Scrivens: Why developing a Culture of Kindness is the foundation of Social Business. Only 13% of the workforce is happy at work; those who are work for leaders who have taken the time to create positive cultures grounded in the behaviours of kindness and abundance, releasing trust, collaboration and innovation for social good.


The Future of Lean: Beyond Continuous Improvement to Innovation by Jeremy Scrivens: Written for the Asia Pacific BPM Conference; keynote speaker Jeremy explores the new age of Lean which goes beyond eliminating waste and errors to improve business processes to ‘New Lean’; which maps and extends strengths in order to experience holistic flow; i.e. hands, head and heart. ‘New Lean’, enabled by Appreciative Inquiry, releases dialogue around what’s possible and innovation, not just fixing problems with the status quo.


Strength-Based Lean Six Sigma: Building Positive and Engaging Business Improvement by David Shaked, with contributions by Jeremy Scrivens. ISBN-13: 978-0749469504

Achieving greater efficiency and effectiveness have always been very important for both for-profit and public sector organizations. Many organizations and government agencies mandate Lean programs in the hope of achieving these objectives, but often these programs underperform and result in resistance. Strength-Based Lean Six Sigma helps increase the level of employees’ engagement with Lean initiatives by shifting the conversation from “what is not efficient or non-value-add and needs to be removed/reduced” to “what is already efficient/value adding and can be built upon or expanded.”  Combining the energy and motivation released through a strengths-based approach with the focus on quality and efficiency generated by Lean Six Sigma, the book offers practitioners the opportunity to understand each other and work successfully together to drive effective and powerful change programs.