Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Interview Guide on Using Strengths

We had 80 people interview each other about their "peak" experiences using their strengths and/or using strengths based approaches on November 18 at our Strengths based consulting and evaluation meeting. I've attached a copy of the interview guide that we used and I'm going to put up some thoughts on how you could use Appreciative Interviews in your work in a future post. Cassandra contact me at

Appreciative Interview Guide for November 18, 2008
Topic: Using Strengths and Strengths Based Approaches

Don’t ask what the world needs. Rather – ask what makes you come alive; then go and do it! Because what the world needs is people who have come alive. Howard Thurman Whitman

Pick a person to be interviewed first. The other person will ask the following questions and listen to the responses. The person asking questions and listening can take notes on what is heard on this sheet. When the questions have been asked and answered, the person who interviewed will be interviewed.

1. Tell me a story about a peak experience when you were using your strengths to accomplish something meaningful, a time when you were able to make a difference that really mattered to you. A time you felt excited, alive, and engaged. What was the situation? What happened? What was it about this that made it a peak experience for you?

2. If you think about an opportunity that you have had to use your strengths and strengths based approaches in your work, a time you’ve been able to collaborate with others to explore what is working, to identify strengths and build on them, what is an example that comes to mind?

3. Without being modest, what strengths did you bring to that experience, without which, success wouldn’t have been possible?

4. If you had 3 wishes that, if fulfilled, would allow you to use your strengths even more, help others discover and utilize their strengths, and to incorporate strengths based approaches to your work – what would they be?

Creating what we most want is fundamentally different than making bad things better. Creating is about bringing into being what most matters-the concrete results you most want to see exist.
-- Bruce Elkin

Appreciative Interview Worksheet

This page is for taking notes on your partner’s story

Notes on your partner’s story:

1. What inspired you?

2. What surprised you?

3. Best quote that came out of the interview:

No comments: