Words Create Worlds®
April 2016 Newsletter
Company of Experts Consulting Services
Working Together is Success... 


Spring has arrived in Southern Nevada. The rays of light seem to be penetrating giving us the warmth that a " being" finds refreshing, invigorating and energizing. Mother Earth is giving us the entrée to be out and about creating and imagining, "what if "?
What does "What if " mean for you, a friend, family member or those you work with on a daily basis? In reading a quote from Henry Ford, his "what if" might have been, "Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success." To me, it means working with others - using ones imagination to be able to feel a change, see it, sense it, feel it and best of all redirect my focus to possibilities. No matter the descriptor or definition it is working and communicating with others. It is about us, all of us.  
This past week I have had the opportunity to read and review the fine work, Practicum's, of many of those that have joined us at Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator Trainings somewhere throughout the world. The stories are touching, encouraging and most of all speak of individuals coming together with a common purpose and outcome, as Henry Ford stated, "...working together is success."    
Individually, how can we create a difference for others thus changing ourselves?

Kathy Becker,
President and CEO,
The Center for Appreciative Inquiry
In This Issue:
Appreciative Resources:
Why Storytelling Will Be the Biggest Business Skill of the Next 5 Years
By: Shane Snow, Chief Content Officer at Contently
In 2012, a pale woman with crazy eyebrows and a keytar strapped to her back made a video of herself, wearing a kimono and holding up hand-Sharpied signs on a street in Melbourne. One by one, the signs flipped, explaining that the woman had spent the last 4 years writing songs. She was a musician, and had parted ways with her record label, which had said the cost of her next album would be a whopping $500,000. She and her band mates were very happy to no longer be with the label, and had worked hard to create some great new music and art. But they couldn't finish producing the record on their own. She needed people's help to get it off the ground and to make what was now her business - independent music - work.

"This is the future of music," one of her signs read. Another, "I love you."

And then she posted the video on Kickstarter. In 30 days, it raised $1.2 million dollars. 24,883 people pre-ordered the album, bought artwork, or simply donated money. The album and tour became a huge success, and the artist turned her music into a real, profitable business. The woman in the kimono, if you haven't heard this story already, was Amanda Palmer, and she went on to give a massively popular TED talk about the whole affair.

Palmer changed the game for independent musicians with that campaign. And she did it, not by simply asking for money, but by telling her story. Read Article>> 
The Neuroscience of Storytelling [Infographic]
By: Amy McCloskey Tobin, Switch and Shift
Great storytelling is an integral part of leadership. Steve Jobs may have been criticized for some elements of his leadership style, but he was able to get his team to believe in the vision he saw. To get your team on board and impassioned about your vision, you need to tell a story they believe in.

Here is how the neuroscience of storytelling works. View Infographic>> 
Four Reasons Why the Most Successful People are Great Collaborators
By: Faisal Hoque, Fast Company

Ever own an ant farm growing up? If you did-or if you've seen just about any nature special on TV-you know that the dedicated specialization of an ant colony is a sight to behold. Our own evolutionary path would be very different without the power of collaboration that's found virtually everywhere in the natural world.

Your office, though, might be another story. While the vogue for collaborative tools and workspaces is still in full force, so is the chorus of detractors who argue that too much interconnectedness makes for more distraction than anything else. And when it comes to certain kinds of tasks, that's frequently true. But the outcomes of our work, more broadly speaking, more often benefit from team effort.

It doesn't matter how smart or savvy we are when it comes to technology, product development, or any single skill we possess. Nobody succeeds for long in a silo. Whatever our ventures-personal, professional, philanthropic, political, or private-we can't forget all the people who are involved in and essential to our success. Read Article>> 
Language as Action: Managing Progress & Accountability
By: Luke Younge, Certified Ai Trainer & Coach, The Center for Appreciative Inquiry
In a previous post I wrote about the concept of Destiny in Appreciative Coaching. For many, the 'radical' approach outlined in that article made sense and breathed new life into their coaching practice; however, many people are curious - how do we evaluate or monitor our client's progress as they live out their Destiny? The International Coaching Federation (ICF) requires its members to adhere to eleven core competencies. The purpose of these competencies is to help coaches support and maximize their client's personal and professional potential. One core competency involves managing a client's process and accountability. This article intends to suggest some methods to: measure, track and evaluate the progress of one's coaching, assess progress and accountability, and reinventing what these terms can mean for us as appreciative coaches.

Progress and Movement
There is a paradigm of progress that says that to progress we must close the gap between where we are and where we want to be. We start here and move to there. In this paradigm milestones, markers, progress indicators all make sense and are very helpful in making good progress. Let's call this the traditional paradigm of progress.

There's another paradigm that says that progress is really only seen in hindsight. Read Article>>
Is "Why" an Appreciative Question?
By: Melissa Robaina, Certified Ai Facilitator & Consultant, The Center for Appreciative Inquiry

A few days ago I shared a fascinating HBR article on LinkedIn titled, "Become a Company That Questions Everything". The article talks about how companies should encourage curiosity in the workforce by inviting employees and other stakeholders to ask questions. The article itself has a large graphic of the word "why". As I shared the article on our various social media outlets, one person asked me if "why" is an appreciative question. I stopped what I was doing just so that I could let that question sink in. I mean, I believed it could be, depending on the context in which it is used but I was curious as to what others thought.

After pondering the question for a day or so, I posted the question on various LinkedIn groups I am connected to. The question spread like wildfire. I was honored that so many people took the time to share their thoughts and experiences. The discussions that emerged were engaging and insightful.

Most of the responses I read agreed that while "why" might not be the first choice in questions we ask our clients, it could, however, be appreciative depending on the context, tone, intention, and the level of trust between the inquirer and the client. In my work with Appreciative Inquiry, I have learned that crafting questions, so that they are both appreciative and meaningful to the client, is more of an art form than methodology. Our success as practitioners lies in our ability to recognize which type of question will work best for the situation. Many of you provided great examples of appreciative "why" questions. Some examples of appreciative "why" questions included, but were not limited to... Read Article>> 
How Happy Brains Respond to Negative Things
By: Summer Allen and Jeremy Adam Smith, Mindful

Recent research provides a whole new understanding of the brain's amygdala-and suggests that happy people take the bad with the good.

You drop a glass while making breakfast. You get stuck in traffic on your way to work. Your boss yells at you for being late. Congratulations! You're having a bad morning. It happens to everyone, at one time or another. But how we react to the bad things in life reveals a lot about our brains.

It might seem to go without saying, but people with sunnier dispositions are better able to regulate their emotions than people with gloomier personalities, who are more likely to be thrown by unpleasant events. Why is this?

There are several possibilities. One is that happier people wear metaphorical "rose-colored glasses" that allow them to focus on positive things and filter out negative ones. Another possibility is that happier people are just better at savoring the good things and allowing them to lift their mood, while still seeing the bad.

Why does this question matter? Read Article>> 
The Secret To Creativity: Become An Intellectual Middleman
By: Laura Vanderkam, Fast Company

The most creative people combine old ideas in new ways. Here's how to get better at mixing things up...

In Charles Duhigg's new book on productivity, Smarter Faster Better, he devotes a chapter to how innovation happens. The answer? Generally not as lightning out of the blue.

One analysis of scientific papers found that the most creative ideas contained deeply conventional ideas, but also combined things in ways that they hadn't been combined before.

One of the researchers on that project, Northwestern University professor Brian Uzzi, told Duhigg, "A lot of the people we think of as exceptionally creative are essentially intellectual middlemen." That is, "They've learned how to transfer knowledge between different industries or groups. They've seen a lot of different people attack the same problems in different settings, and so they know which kinds of ideas are more likely to work."

So how do you become an intellectual middleman? Learn More>>  
The Skeptics Guide to Visualizing Career Success
By: Christie Mims, The Muse

You want to be successful, right?

In fact, you've probably used that very word recently. But have you truly thought about it? What I mean is, have you deeply defined what the word means to you personally?

We bandy it about all the time, saying things like, "Oh yeah, I want to be successful" or, "I hope I'm successful," but rarely do we define it in a meaningful way for ourselves.

And that's where things go wrong.

There are about a zillion articles out there telling you to just visualize it, as if it's as simple as eating breakfast or checking your email. Plus, if you're like me, sometimes the idea of "visualizing something" feels just a little bit, well, squishy. And squishy doesn't often lead to results.

So, let's be the opposite of that and get practical instead. Learn More>>
Appreciative Inquiry Directory: Join Our Growing Network

The Center for Appreciative Inquiry's Directory was created to allow clients to find Certified Appreciative Inquiry professionals worldwide, provide expert support and peer collaboration for independent consultants, and build a growing network of individuals who want to increase their impact for making a positive difference in the World - inspiring success and connections of people, community and organizations.

Who is listed on the Appreciative Inquiry Directory?
  1. Individuals certified through the Center for Appreciative Inquiry (CAI) from 2005 to present are eligible to be included in the Center for Appreciative Inquiry Directory Listing for FREE for the duration for their certification.
  2. Individuals who have participated in Appreciative Inquiry workshops by other Ai providers are also eligible for certification and a directory listing - please contact us directly to learn how.
Directory profiles are easy to create and update and will make you locatable by our worldwide audience. All Directory profiles will remain visible on our website for FREE for the duration of your certification. Create your Free Ai Directory listing today! Our Directory Profile creation process is easy and takes only a few minutes. Once approved, you can begin enjoying all the benefits of your Free Appreciative Inquiry Directory Listing.

To learn more about our Appreciative Inquiry Directory, please click here.
We Are Looking for Appreciative Inquiry Trainers

The Center for Appreciative Inquiry is seeking experienced trainers, coaches, consultants and facilitators to become certified to teach its Appreciative Inquiry Trainings and Workshops. Trainers will be certified to deliver our various workshops (to business, community, non-profit, education, etc.) to support the growth and interest in Appreciative Inquiry focusing on dialogue, collaboration and how the human systems thrive.

We are looking for high energy people with a commitment to helping others develop and grow as internal facilitators and to be part of creating a better World Community.  If you are grounded in humans systems flourishing demonstrated by your views of social change and by participating in the AI Community, you may be a good match for this program. Learn More>>