Words Create Worlds®
November 2015 Newsletter
Company of Experts Consulting Services
The holiday season is upon us... 


November is the month of Thanksgiving! For our friends that reside outside of the U.S., Thanksgiving is a National holiday in the U.S. and is a time for family, friends, thankfulness, and reflection. A day set aside to be thankful and, more importantly, to let others know that you are thankful.  In this time of economic and environmental uncertainty, it may be a challenge for some to be grateful. Yet, just like Fall in the air, we are getting a slight whisper of change.
We invite each of you to join in the high energy and well-being that gratitude brings to each of us. Thankful for love, family, friends, health, happiness, children, food, flowers - the list is as bountiful as your imagination and heart can dream. Each of us can begin by asking ourselves and our friends a question that will focus on the best of what we want in the future, "Think back over this past year and share a story about a time that you felt most thankful...one that felt most warm and meaningful. Who was there? What made it so wonderful? What made it so special?"

Have a wonderful and bountiful week. We thank each of you for sharing your stories of success - seeking the high points to learn, adapt and thrive. Your stories bring such light into our office and to our work.

Kathy Becker,
President and CEO,
The Center for Appreciative Inquiry
In This Issue:
Appreciative Resources:
Welcome to the Appreciative Inquiry Community...
Company of Experts / Center for Appreciative Inquiry is pleased to introduce its newest Certified Appreciative Inquiry Facilitators and/or Coaches to its growing AI family. 

The individual(s) listed below participated in our 4-day Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator Training (AIFT) and/or our 5 day Appreciative Inquiry Coaching Training (AICT) program and submitted a practicum demonstrating their knowledge and application of Appreciative Inquiry. In reading their practicums, we are able to celebrate in their achievements and observe how Appreciative Inquiry has positively influenced their lives - personally and professionally.
  • Douglas M. Littles, "Living Out My Greatest Potential in All the Rooms of My Life"
New practicums are frequently posted to our website, so please check back often to see what new stories have been posted. Click here for more practicums.
Why the Smartest People Choose Meaning Over Money
By Lisa Evans, Fast Company

We've heard over and over that millennials are idealistic.

In a 2014 study commissioned by McGraw-Hill Education, The Grad Gap, the majority of graduating students (73%) say it was more important to find a job that allows them to do what they love, than to find a job that pays well (20%). What's more, 45% of students reported they would prefer a job that is beneficial to society while only 27% reported they would prefer a job that simply pays well. But working for meaning rather than money isn't exclusively important to the youngest generation of workers, says Bill Connolly, author of The Success Disconnect.

Here's how we can all benefit from finding meaningful work. 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. We look over our shoulder and say, "yes I progressed", but we cannot actually 'progress' in the present moment. In the present all we can do is live and act according to a set of beliefs and assumptions about what is possible for us right now. There is, of course, progress in this paradigm (as well as hard work), but the notion of struggle to 'close the gap' is absent. We are relieved of the struggle to succeed, and instead act in accordance with the future that calls us. The future we are 'living into' lives as something possible in the present. It is held in our images of the future. Read Article>>
How Heartfelt Conversation is Co-Created with Appreciative Inquiry
By: Robyn Stratton-Berkessel, Positivity Strategist
I continue to be struck with wonder at the transformative power of Appreciative Inquiry. It doesn't matter how often I'm present to the experience of  Appreciative Inquiry, the magic, the power, the spirit to move people toward each other to give of their best selves and share their aspirations never fails to deliver.  The collective energy among a group of people who don't know each other at the start, irrespective of how many are in the room, who they are, what the topic is delivers expressions of hope, possibility and positive potential.

Affirmative topic of Generations Wiser Together
I've just come off designing an AI workshop and facilitated the same workshop with two very different groups.  The goal of the groups was the same.  We were inquiring into the affirmative topic of Generations Wiser Together.  My client, WiseTribe.us worked tirelessly to bring groups together in two different towns.  We aimed to attract as much diversity as possible. Read Article>> 
Push Made to Strengthen Local Community Through Appreciative Inquiry
By: Todd McMahon, Press-Gazette Media

Shawn Kassien is encouraged by the strides being made in his east-side Green Bay neighborhood. "Joannes Park, in the last five years, you'd be surprised," said Kassien, president of the Joannes Park Neighborhood Association. "You walk on the East River (Trail) walkway, and you find people now saying, 'Hello,' 'Hi, how are you doing?', that type of thing, because that's what I promote."

Kassien's work is just beginning, as are the efforts of so many as they chip away at divisions in the community.

The more than 100 people who attended the Bay Area Community Council-sponsored Community Summit on Saturday at The Stadium View Bar & Grille are committed to action.

They rolled up their sleeves, drew up plans and are ready to carry those out for the sake of uniting a diverse region of more than 250,000 residents.

"To change a community is awesome to see," Barbara Davis said. "A lot of people want something better for our community." Read Article>>
How to Find a Job that Aligns with Your Values
By: Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Fast Company

Most of us want to feel the work we do is in some way meaningful, but many of us probably don't. With employee engagement figures in the toilet and the majority of workers open to considering a new job, it appears there's a high demand for better and more purposeful work. So where do we find it?

The Value Of Value-Driven Employment
For all talk of finding your passion, the truth is that the most exceptional job opportunities are open only to a few, exceptional applicants.

What's more, even those in coveted, super-competitive roles are often miserable at work, not least because the value of seemingly universal career incentives, like high pay or a high-status title, wears off pretty quickly.

In other words, the grass is always greener on the other side, and even high achievers are always asking for more. While some people find they're happier switching high-power business careers for lower-paying, more altruistic ones, the fact is that finding a job that feels meaningful varies from person to person, depending on what each of us values most. Read Article>> 
Appreciative Inquiry to Build a Culture of Kindness
By: Jeremy Scrivens

Many people feel unengaged and unhappy at work across the Western World. The disengagement level at work has reached a crisis point. Managers need a new 'toolkit' to engage people but above all a new lens to view their people: the lens of kind leadership that engages people to give their best in a Culture of Kindness. Let me present the three culture types I see and how Appreciative Inquiry can help to build a Culture of Kindness.

Three workplace types
If we take a closer look at this issue of engagement of people at work, what do we see? There seem to be three types of people at work: the Contributors, the Compliant, and the Subversives. Read Article>> 
Proof of What Works is Essential to Improving Later Life
By: Catherine Foot, The Guardian

What do you think is most needed to improve the quality of later life in this country?

You might say money - to reverse the chronic under-resourcing of publicly funded social care, for instance, or to invest much more widely in the housing adaptations that we know can help older people to remain independent.

You might say leadership - a form that brings together planning, housing, care and health, and the private, statutory and voluntary sectors, to work meaningfully together, sharing goals and delivering services that meet people's needs and priorities in later life.

You might say we need to focus on attitudes and empowerment - to build a society that fully values and includes older people, families and carers and creates services for them that are designed with them.

Or you might say that we need to help more people in mid-life get skills and information to think about and prepare for their financial, social, housing and care needs in the future. Learn More>> 
Neil Gaiman on How Stories Last
By: Maria Popova, Daily Good

Stories have shapes, as Vonnegut believed, and they in turn give shape to our lives. But how do stories like the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm or Alice in Wonderland continue to enchant the popular imagination generation after generation - what is it that makes certain stories last?

That's what the wise and wonderful Neil Gaiman explores in a fantastic lecture two and a half years in the making, part of the Long Now Foundation's nourishing and necessary seminars on long-term thinking.

Nearly half a century after French molecular biologist Jacques Monod proposed what he called the "abstract kingdom" - a conceptual parallel to the biosphere, populated by ideas that propagate like organisms do in the natural world - and after Richard Dawkins built upon this concept to coin the word "meme," Gaiman suggests stories are a life-form obeying the same rules of genesis, reproduction, and propagation that organic matter does. Learn More>>
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>>