Wednesday Jul 26, 2023

From Small Shop to Billion-Dollar Success: The Journey of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters with Pru Sullivan

Who’s Inspiring Impacts today? Pru Sullivan! Pru Sullivan is the former Director of Continuous Learning and Organizational Development at Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. Tune in as Pru speaks with host Dr. Lindsey Godwin about how to integrate Appreciative Inquiry principles into the core of your company and with employees.

Pru sheds light on how Green Mountain Coffee Roasters leveraged Appreciative Inquiry to grow from a small shop to the billion-dollar company it is today. She describes the different ways you can adopt an appreciative approach at a growing organization, from leadership onboarding and project management to accelerating employee and collective performance and beyond.

Pru Sullivan is a Founding Partner of The Change Factory and a Practitioner in Residence Emeritus at David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry at Champlain College-Stiller School of Business. For over a decade, Pru has been co-creating, designing, and delivering strength-based growth initiatives based on Appreciative Inquiry methodology. Her mission is to be an inspirational catalyst for personal, team, organizational, and community breakthrough growth and strength-based transformation.

Episode Highlights:

  • How Bob Stiller’s philosophy of strength-based Appreciative Inquiry impacted Green Mountain Coffee’s culture.
  • How Appreciative Inquiry creates shared ownership in organizational change.
  • Green Mountain’s AI Summit: Where their core principles were born.
  • Tips for onboarding new leaders and ensuring they’re aligned with your organization’s core values and culture.
  • The critical impact of appreciative training for frontline supervisors.
  • How to use Appreciative Inquiry in employee performance reviews to accelerate individual and collective performance.
  • Building Appreciative Inquiry into project management and product development.

Resources Mentioned:

The Joy of Appreciative Living by Jackie Kelm:

Inspiring Quotes:

“What’s wonderful about Appreciative Inquiry is that when you make that shift, the evidence shows up.”

“A performance review cycle often acts as a demotivator and an upsetter that takes months to often recover from. And so, we formed a cross-functional team… to say, our task is to redesign this process and redesign the software that’s coming in to reflect how we want performance management to be managed.”

“It’s not a nice-to-have, it’s a must-have if you want to be a high-performance organization that is making a positive difference in the world.”

What is Appreciative Inquiry?

Appreciative Inquiry, sometimes referred to as “the other AI”, is one of the best kept secrets behind meaningful and lasting change at organizations. The AI approach is strength-based, meaning it focuses on identifying and leveraging successes to solve problems, rather than focusing on trying to fix individual failures.

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