Tag Archives: positive change

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workplace fairness

Workplace Fairness Should Be Abundant

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Life isn’t always fair, at least, that is what we’re often told. Yet people want to be granted the opportunity for fairness. Can you impact workplace fairness?

Have you ever heard someone suggest that things are too fair?

It seems that the scarce resources are much more noteworthy.

What’s Fair

Fairness becomes an issue when we see differences. In the workplace it is true for gender, race, the generations, and so much more.

People often reference the golden rule. “Treat others the way you would like to be treated.” And, in generational talks I often reference that there may be a shift in the golden rule. Perhaps a different view is, treat others the way they would like to be treated.

Despite all of the efforts of many, people still form cliques. They desire to cling to people who are just like themselves or who have exactly the same values and beliefs.

Fairness is problematic for job status, promotions, and perks.

The management team is treated differently than the front-line crew.

Awareness is often the first step in making a positive change.

Workplace Fairness

It is surprising sometimes the number of people who fail to recognize their own ability to be fair. Fairness to you may not look like fairness to someone else.

This is exactly why the golden rule may need some deeper examination.

What is the right thing to do? Do people do the right thing?

Now more than ever it is important for everyone to dig deep and make it better.

Often the first step in making things fairer is dependent upon your own actions. If you feel like it is the right thing to do then there really shouldn’t be a reason why you are not.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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appreciative inquiry strategies

Using Appreciative Inquiry to Build a Better Customer Experience

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Every business and successful organization cares about the customer experience. Can you use Appreciative Inquiry methodologies to build a better customer experience?

Those reading who are new to appreciative inquiry only need to understand a few basics about the definition to get started.

Appreciative Inquiry

Appreciative inquiry may be described as a method to search for, uncover, and bring out the best in people, teams, and entire organizations.

Perhaps the most important factor for getting started is to understand that Appreciative Inquiry is not centered on identifying problems. It is centered on asking questions (inquiring) about what gives a system and its people life.

Consider that it’s looking for positive imagination (dreaming) and innovative ways (designing) to use positive approaches. It is not focused on negativity, what didn’t or won’t work, and chronic diagnoses of what is causing problems.

Customer service appreciative inquiry strategies

Based on either a 4-D or 5-D Cycle model properly empowered people can ask questions, innovate, form strategies, and transform systems and culture based on positive life giving forces.

Customer Experience

It’s easy to get started on ways to improve the customer experience. Instead of asking customers or the people in your organization what is wrong or what didn’t work, use an Appreciative Inquiry approach.

Consider asking a somewhat vague opening question that will drive the conversation, something like “What would our best product or service, considering no limitations or barriers, look like?”

You can then supplement the interactions with supporting information-gathering questions like:

  • What customer stories, testimonials, or other narratives can be shared about best experiences?
  • Describe the features or values about our products or services that inspire recommendations to others.
  • What brings our customers back for repeat business?

Appreciative Strategies

Often one of the most important and challenging aspects of driving change within a system or organization through Appreciative Inquiry is carefully and closely monitoring the interactions. Many people, especially those unfamiliar with the process will quickly digress into problems, reasons why not, and subjective negativity.

Appreciative strategies inquiry custserv

During most interventions this is not intentional to undermine the process. It is more representative of patterns of learned behaviors which are to identify the problem, exploit it, analyze it, agonize over it, and repeat. That is not the Appreciative Inquiry way.

Can you use Appreciative Inquiry approaches to build a better customer experience?




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Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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Speak Early

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Another meeting in the cycle, it’s weekly, monthly, or quarterly. You know the drill, it’s report outs, lectures, and stories of where everything comes up short. Change is what you want and change is part of the talk, but no one challenges the true status quo.

Three businesspeople having a meeting in the office with a laptop computer and a digital tablet

You tell yourself it’s not the right time, the right place, or that it has all been said before. You want to speak up, but you’re feeling the end result will find you black listed, your reputation tarnished, and you’ll be overlooked for future advancement. You know your point is valid and that others agree. It’s been said, discussed, and supported privately with your colleagues and peers.  

Change has at least one consistent outcome; its path is always a bell curve. It starts with positive growth on the up side, a peak, and then the dreaded downward slide. The key for best success then will come to those who join in early, benefit from the up side, and ride to the top. Procrastination or waiting won’t work. You can’t coast, stall, or stop, not if you are planning to be ahead of the peak.

Speak early, not late. 


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker, and coach that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is the author of the newly released book, Forgotten Respect. Reach him through his website at http://DennisEGilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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