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Appreciative Approach Model (redirected from Human Performance Technology Model: Appreciative Approach)

Page history last edited by bbraine1@gsu.student.edu 11 years, 1 month ago

The "HPT Model: Appreciative Approach" is a very interesting hybrid of the traditional HPT model and the holistic 4-D Model. 

The hybrid model was created by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva of Case Western Reserve University. The model relies largely on HPT theory with two major differences: 1) It focuses on what IS working and 2) It relies heavily on positive framing of questions posed.


Appreciative inquiry (AI) is the art and practice of asking questions that strengthen a system’s capacity to apprehend, anticipate, and heighten positive potential. It centrally involves the mobilization of inquiry through the crafting of the “unconditional positive question” often-involving hundreds or sometimes thousands of people. In AI, the arduous task of intervention gives way to the speed of imagination and innovation; instead of negation, criticism, and spiraling diagnosis, there is discovery, dream, and design.  


The 4-D Model (shown below) is central to AI and is largely used in organizational development, psychology, sociology and leadership theory.  It is characterized as a holistic model due to its nonlinear form and its unique modeling characteristics.  Holistic models are represented by overlapping domains that exist separately but form an ideal performance zone when combined.  Appreciative action begins at the center of the model in which the affirmative topic choice is selected.  The topic is the starting point and suggests a direction for the future.  The words themselves are a powerful component to this model.  For example, Would one prefer to study a project that focuses on addressing customer dissatisfaction? Or would one prefer to focus on how to create lasting customer relationships? 


The HPT: Appreciative Approach Model incorporates concepts of the 4-D model into the traditional HPT Model.  In combining the two, the analysis stage of the HPT Model became a key area of opportunity.  Two primary changes were made to the HPT Model: 1) The addition of positive experience analysis and 2) Reframing and conversion of the cause analysis into a strengths analysis.




Performance Analysis: Discover the Positve Core

The positive experience analysis is an important addition that expands the traditional HPT data collection to include insights at the individual level, especially those of a positive nature.


Distance Analysis: Dream

This step focuses on "ideal workforce performance".  Ideal workforce performance is the difference between actual and desired performance but is not defined as the "gap". Rather, it is defined as the distance between the two. Gap is not used as it is thought to be a deficit.


Intervention Selection, Design, and Development: Design

This area of the model focuses on tradional HPT theory and looks to the full array of HPT solutions.  Creativity and willingness are also relied upon for additional options.



This area of the model relies on tradional HPT methodology with the additon of "stories" as another element to discovering strengths.  Success stories are combined with lessons learned to help uncover what is happening within the organization.


Real world experience provides interesting insight into the application of AI:

Consultants, Susan Donnan and David Shaked provide interesting insight into the application of HPT:AI model.  


"Early indicators of success include confidence, energy, hope, commitment, relationships, accountability, alignment, trust and empowerment, which are difficult to measure, but can be ‘felt’, ‘noticed’, or captured in anecdotal stories.  These early indicators of success need to be nurtured and supported. By defining and implementing projects, allocating time and resources and making changes to leadership behaviours (e.g. letting go of control, keeping an honest dialogue with employees, working on the self etc.), we support the change.  Documenting and making progress visible to all, and celebrating successes by recognizing and rewarding the relevant teams and individuals further help embed the change.  The tangible outcome measures tend to be lagging indicators. We have to be patient and trust that they will come as long as we have positive indicators that tell us we are moving in the right direction.  As the use of Appreciative Inquiry around the world becomes more mature over time, practitioners are becoming more innovative in the use of AI and in combining AI with classical management practices such as project management, Lean and Six Sigma, quality, auditing and balanced scorecard. The operative phrase is ‘AI and ...’ rather than ‘AI instead of ...’.  A key success factor for change is the involvement and the participation of the whole system at the unit of change (e.g. a team, a plant, a hospital or a business unit). Success at one level of the organisation can lead to adaptation of AI and success at a larger organisational unit."



Rosenzweig, J., & Van Tiem, D. M. (2007). An appreciative view of human performance technology. Performance Improvement, 46(5), 36-43. doi:10.1002/pfi.132




Donnan, S., & Shaked, D. (2010). Measuring the Impact of Appreciative Inquiry in the Private Sector. AI Practitioner, 12(3), 4-9.


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