Prepare for the New Year – Your 2019 Vision Board

Author:  Laiza N. Otero, MSOD, Organization Development Consultant

What’s a vision board? In a nutshell, a vision board is a visual representation of one’s desired future with the goal of “if I can see it I can achieve it.”  One of the many things I love about vision boards is how they beautifully intersect with the philosophy of Appreciative Inquiry (AI). Following are some AI and vision board basics to help you celebrate 2018 and welcome 2019.  Happy New Year!
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Change Platforms: Less Burning, More Inspiration

Author:  Laiza N. Otero, MSOD, Organization Development Consultant

During change initiatives, it is not uncommon to hear questions about the urgency of the effort, the business case/need for it, or what the “burning platform” is that drives the change.  But what if we reframed the conversation to one of inspiration and energy? That is one (out of many) ideas  David Cooperrider challenges one to think about during the course “The New Change Equation” at Case Western Reserve University.

Cooperrider’s question led me to reflect about the different organization development (OD) models and tools I use with my clients. Were they in alignment with the appreciative, strengths-based approach I prefer to use in my work? Were they inspirational? If no, how could I reframe them? Continue reading

How Melodic Are Your Vision and Mission Statements?

Author:  Laiza N. Otero, MSOD, Organization Development Consultant

What does melody have to do with vision and mission statements? For me, quite a bit.

Merriam-Webster defines melody as 1) “a sweet or agreeable succession or arrangement of sounds” and 2) “a rhythmic succession of single tones organized as an aesthetic whole; a hummable melody.”  When I write – whether it be articles, essays, poems, or even client reports – I intentionally arrange my words and thoughts to construct a melody.  I strive for my words to be rhythmic, flow, and provide an experience for both my audience and me. Continue reading

S.O.A.R. Into Results

Author:  Laiza N. Otero, MSOD, Organization Development Consultant

Over the last year, few models have impacted the way I conduct my work more than S.O.A.R.

Developed by Jacqueline Stavros and Gina Hinrichs, S.O.A.R. is a simple yet powerful tool for framing dialogues within organizations.  A lot of us were trained long-ago in the use of S.W.O.T. analyses. In the latter, the discussion traditionally revolves around identifying strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.  What I kept running into was that the dialogue got stuck in the weaknesses and threats, and I found it difficult to excite myself and the audience around the strengths and opportunities.

Then a consulting trip last year to Johannesburg, South Africa, changed my world.  While there, I got to work with three amazing consultants whose work is based on Appreciative Inquiry:  Anastasia Bukashe, Enrique Zaldivar, and Joep C de Jong.  It was through them that I learned about S.O.A.R. Continue reading