New Book Shares How to Build Thriving Organizations Through Appreciative Leadership

New Book Shares How to Build Thriving Organizations Through Appreciative Leadership

Learn 5 strategies for extraordinary performance

The inspiration for the newly published Appreciative Leadership book came from years of observing a pattern when participating in large-scale, whole-system change using Appreciative Inquiry (AI).

Amanda Trosten-Bloom, co-author and managing director at Corporation for Positive Change, says they witnessed some initiatives take off into “amazing and powerful positive directions” with incredible sustaining traction, while others had a big splash but then fizzled out.

Trosten-Bloom and Corporation for Positive Change president Diana Whitney discovered a significant predictor of an initiative’s success was the leadership of the system, and in 2002 wrote a book chapter on Leading AI.

The chapter was pulled because it didn’t fit with the rest of the book and for years Trosten-Bloom says they saw the phenomenon continue. Corporation for Positive Change launched an Appreciative Leadership Development Program that showed dramatic differences in the leaders’ capacity to affect change.

“The book came from a combination of our lived experience as consultants, our experience as facilitators of this leadership development program and then the feedback we got from focus group participants along the way,” Trosten-Bloom tells Axiom News.

She says the meaning of appreciative leadership has a few important components, including a relational capacity in how leaders relate to people in the world around them. Secondly, the capacity affects the world in a way that turns potential into power. The last key is it creates ripples of positive change.

The book provides five core strategies, each with its own set of skills, that create a profile of someone that can have enormous positive impact on the world, she says. 

The five strategies are:

  • Inquiry — asking positively powerful questions
  • Illumination — bringing out the best in people
  • Inclusion — engaging with people to co-create the future
  • Inspiration — awakening the creative spirit
  • Integrity — being in service and a steward to the best interest of the whole

Trosten-Bloom says the book is beneficial to anyone in a leadership capacity or aspiring to leadership, noting she has a broad definition of leadership, as “we are all leaders in our lives and in our communities.”

Filled with stories of people who are practising appreciative leadership, Trosten-Bloom says she hopes people takeaway a vision of what is possible, curiosity about how they can achieve that and clear concrete steps they can put in place to move towards that vision.

“What I’d really like to see is that five years from now we would be hearing stories from around the world of schools and corporations and communities that are operating differently as a result of this,” she adds.

Readers are invited to submit their own appreciative leadership stories by visiting

Trosten-Bloom and co-authors Whitney and Kae Rader are celebrating the book launch this week, with free downloadable excerpts available each day. Trosten-Bloom and Rader invite anyone in the Denver, Colorado area to attend a discussion and book signing at The Tattered Cover July 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Books purchased July 14 and 15 from any major bookseller will have $1 given to the United Religions Initiative NA. Click here for details.

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Writer Bio

Jennifer Neutel's picture
Jennifer Neutel

Jennifer Neutel is a Story Advocate and Generative Journalist at Axiom News. She completed her Bachelor of Journalism at Carleton University in Ottawa in 2006, and joined Axiom News in 2007. She has taken on a variety of roles at Axiom including new social media intiatives and has a passion for creating strengths-based questions that can lead to positive change.

Contact Jennifer:, or 705-741-4421 ext. 26.

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