Interview with Kathy Becker of The Center for Appreciative Inquiry – PS039

Episode Overview

This episode is Part I of a two Part show.  Robyn Stratton-Berkessel interviews Kathy Becker. Both are Appreciative Inquiry Practitioners and professional colleagues. In Part I, Robyn interviews Kathy demonstrating the Appreciative Inquiry Discovery Interview.  In Part II, roles are reversed and Kathy interviews Robyn. We talk about our high peak experiences using the Appreciative Inquiry approach which has been used globally for almost 30 years.  Appreciative Inquiry has been called a positive revolution in change.  It seeks to inspire, mobilize, and sustain, employee engagement and collaborations.

Episode Introduction

Kathy Becker from the center for appreciative inquiryKathy Becker Kathy is the CEO/President of the Company of Experts, Inc. and is a trained Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator/Trainer.  Kathy incorporates AI into her consulting, training, and online teaching. With her background in the public and private sectors as well as a strong commitment to customer service and developing learning organizations.

Center for Appreciative Inquiry

Kathy brings real-world experience to her workshops. As founder of the Center for Appreciative Inquiry, her workshops include: Appreciative Inquiry, Equal Employment Opportunity, Diversity Hiring, Leadership, Customer Relations, Conflict Resolution, Succession Planning and Creating Change through Dialogue. Working with clients in non-profits, business, education, government, NGO’s, military and with individuals, Kathy has built solid relationships.

High Point Experience

In this Appreciative Inquiry Interview, Kathy shares her high point experience of planning, designing and facilitating a 4,500 person summit for an educational district in Georgia.  It naturally took a team of people – referred to as the “Core Team” in the interview – to plan and execute such an event.

Kathy praises the people and the process.  She explains the huge value the Core Team contributes to the overarching success of the Appreciative Inquiry summit. Right from their initial training and buy-in to the process, members of the Core Team go out of their way to make it all happen.  If hick-ups occur along they way, they find the solution with grace.

Appreciative Inquiry Discovery Interview

Below is the generic Appreciative Inquiry Interview.  We use this “template” as the opening conversation between two people to inquire into high point or peak experiences.  In this interview, the inquiry was about the high-point experience as an Appreciative Inquiry practitioner.  You can substitute this topic for your own. For example, as a leaders, as a parent, as an educator, as a team member.

When you do that, you get to the core – the positive core – of the person’s experience. And from that positive start, you continue to inquire into what else is possible.


  1. What has been a high-point experience for you as an AI practitioner, when you felt most alive, successful, and effective? Please share your story.
    • What was the situation?
    • Who was involved?
    • What happened?
    • What was the experience like for the client group and you?
    • How did you feel?
  1. Without being humble, what do you value most about yourself, your work, and how it’s organized?
  2. What are the core factors that make this work function at its best, when it feels a perfect fit for who you are, and you see how this work impacts your clients.  What are some of those impacts?
  3. What are three wishes for the future of this work for you as an AI practitioner?

Positivity Lens NotebookPOSITIVITY LENS for this Episode

Download Kathy's suggested “positive activities” for this episode: Hint- it’s about it’s about revisiting a high point experience on a topic that’s important to you.

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Part II Follows in Episode PS40

Kathy and I hope you enjoy this interview. Stay tuned, because Part II – How Appreciative Questions Work  follows next and the roles will be reversed.  Kathy will interview me, Robyn.  I share my high point experience as an Appreciative Inquiry Practitioner.

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