Monday, December 10, 2018

Building Resilience with Appreciative Inquiry by Joan McArthur-Blair and Jeanie Cockell Book Review



Leadership is a journey that doesn’t have a definitive playbook. It’s helpful to have different ideas and models to guide and mentor as we improve our leadership skills. The new book Building Resilience with Appreciative Inquiry by Joan McArthur- Blair and Jeanie Cockell offer a unique roadmap that they call Appreciative Inquiry. This model illustrates how to build resilience in leading oneself and those around you. It’s an approach for positive change in organizations, individuals, and groups. The process engages people by telling and listening to stories to build the future of people and organizations together in an engaging manner.

Appreciative Inquiry (AI) can be used in strategic planning, team development, coaching, organizational development, and research. Ultimately, the process shows leaders at all levels how to build long-term resilience by using AI to reflect on and explore leadership through hope, despair, and forgiveness. This process builds leadership resilience in not just us, but our people. AI helps us navigate through difficult situations as leaders. It guides us in connecting with others.

The book offers personal and real-life leadership situations for readers to see AI in action. It’s useful to know the impact of AI by introducing several valuable models. Moreover, each chapter opens with an inspiring poem and ends with reflection questions to really get us thinking as leaders and asking how we can use the lessons in the book to be stronger leaders who can impact the people around us and the organizations that we work in.

What I enjoyed most about the book are the first-hand stories about AI and how it can change people and organizations. It helps to bring all the various ideas in the book together for that “aha” moment. It helps everything to gel and assists the reader to start down on a new path to leadership.

For those that really see the benefits that AI can bring to your organization or team, there are some excellence chapters at the end of the book to help you practice AI and even conduct your own AI workshop with your team with the support of other leaders in your organization.

If you want to explore a new leadership method, pick up a copy of Building Resilience with Appreciative Inquiry.

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