Appreciative Inquiry Exercise

cf.: Appreciative Eye – Critical Eye

We broke up into groups of about 4 people.

Each group was to come up with two concise statements on butcher paper:

  • A description of what they thought describes the best of what our group represents.
  • A bold, forward looking statement of what they thought was possible for our group.

At the bottom of each page, we made two rows of boxes (Row I and row A), numbered from 1 to 7.

All of these statements were placed up onto the wall.

Everybody then had blue and red stickers, which they were to place in the numbered boxes.

The “I” row represented the degree to which the statement represented an Ideal, with 7 meaning it represented an ideal for you, and 1 meaning it did not.

The “A” row represented the degree to which the statement represented our current, actual state.

For the “Ideal”, if there was a spread, it can indicate that not all of the group shares that common goal.  Potentially, the spread could be bi-modal, with some strongly supporting, and some strongly opposed.  If nothing else, it shows one measure of group alignment with the statement in question.

For the “Actual”, the spread can indicate the degree of difference of experience within the group, and show that not everybody even thinks we are starting from the same location.  If there is a high cluster within the “Actual” rankings, it can also indicate that either the group thinks it is operating near ideal on that one, or that perhaps the statement was not
that forward looking in the first place.

Other inferences are clearly possible too, but that is the essence of the activity.




Primary Goals sits at the intersection of three core ideas about communication:
  • Leaders create vision by communicating a compelling future to their teams.
  • Teams create success based on how effectively the communicate and coordinate with each other.
  • Entrepreneurial ventures are successful only when they communicate value to people with a concern that the business can take care of
In all cases, it’s about Conversations for Committed Results.  That’s our Primary Goal.  



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