New approaches to employee development and group empowerment, such as we have described, must become part of a larger appreciative process. When this happens, empowerment and development will find its appropriate place as a major force for improving the quality of work being done in today’s organizations. The processes of group empowerment and individual employee development, as they involve any person or organization, are always subtle and ill defined. One should be amazed that any significant empowerment or development ever takes place and should feel gratified if either of these appreciative initiatives has in part been attributable to one’s own efforts as an organizational consultant.
Some change in the attitudes and performance of employees and groups has taken place. New ideas are being generated. These changes are based on a greater appreciation on the part of an individual employee for her own distinctive competencies and on the part of a specific team for its capacity to effectively engage a challenging gap between the current and ideal state. These outcomes are sufficient justification, in and of themselves, for a program of development and empowerment. However, an appreciative program that is successful may impact on the organization in ways that are not anticipated. If such is the case, then our efforts as an organizational consultant in helping to bring about development and empowerment may play a greater role in releasing the human capital of our client’s organization than any of us could hope or imagine.