Using Your Positive Organisational Development Cards: 10 Ideas To Get You Started


So you've got some of our Positive Organisational Development Cards - now what? We have produced a list of 10 ideas for ways in which you could use the cards to add value to your work with different audiences.

In General

You can use these cards in a number of ways to stimulate discussion; create commonality and motivation; and to identify agreed action. Some general ideas are:

  • Use the cards as they stand, the questions and the action points
  • Use a rating scale ‘To what extent is this present in our team/organization/group at the moment on a scale of 1-10? What would we like to be? How can we move towards this?’etc.
  • As a prioritizing tool. ‘Which five of these are most key to our future success/our development/our strategy?’
  • As playing cards. Each person has some. Someone starts by laying down a card they think is important (to the topic under discussion) explaining why they think so, the person who thinks they can build on this with one of the cards in their hand lays it down with ‘yes and...’. This is a cooperative card game, with no winners or losers.


With Senior Executives

1) Leadership

Use the Authentic Leadership card as a stimulus to the initial discussion.

Ask them to identify what other cards they see as being relevant to being an effective, positive leader (e.g. affirmation and positive deviance, mindfulness, engagement, virtuous practices, positive energy networks and strengths). Use the questions to stimulate discussion and the further notes to create possibilities for initiatives or personal development


2) Organisational Culture

Take the five culture cards (pink). For each card consider and discuss the questions and then make a rating for each concept (where are we now?) on a scale of 1-10. Then ask – Where do we want to be? Look at the action points and pick a few as a basis for planning how to start moving in the right direction


Leaders and Managers in General

3) Using micro-moments as a leader

Select the cards that leaders can have an impact on in every engagement they have (e.g. positive deviance, virtuous practices, authentic leadership, high quality connections, positive emotions, flourishing, mindfulness). Use the questions to stimulate discuss to raise awareness of the importance of these concepts to creating a positive organisational atmosphere. Then use pointers for action to help create action resolutions.

4) Performance Appraisal

The yellow cards (with the possible exception of the Appreciative Inquiry card) form a good basis for a performance appraisal conversation. Also include the blue cards engagement and flow and maybe the flourishing card. The key question is ‘When you do you experience this at work? What are you doing, who is around?’ and so on to help them learn about when they are at their best.

Alternatively, you can spread the cards out and ask them to pick a few cards that exemplify what they would like more of in their work. Or what they find most exciting at work e.g. using strengths, being affirmed, having great conversations and so on.

5) Career Counselling

Pick a few appropriate cards like affirmation, strengths, positive deviance, authentic leadership, engagement, generativity, and ask them which of these features might be important to them in a job or their next career move? How can they find out whether a job or organization offers these? Alternatively get them to pick the five that seem most important to them to allowing them to give their best at work.


Groups – Development

6) Culture / Organisational Development

Take the pink culture cards and add any others you like, such as positive deviance, affirmation and flourishing, asking ‘What is important to us in our culture? Where is this already present?’ and so on, use the questions on the back of the card as well. Get the group to make a current rating of where the organization is, then use the suggestions on the cards to stimulate discussion of actions to increase positivity of the culture. These cards help individuals identify what they can do to move things forward.

Take the green cards and repeat the process. These give ideas as to how to create cultural change at the collective level.

7) Identifying our strengths as leaders and managers

Start with the strengths card, identifying what strengths are and working with the questions and suggestions on the back. You can then delve further into the individual and collective strengths using a strengths card pack (such as the Strengthscope cards or the Positive Insights strengths cards), or work with rest of the positive psychology concept cards to identify organisational positive psychology strengths. E.g. as an organization we are good at... ‘affirmation’ and the evidence is....

From here the discussion can move to how to build on the strengths we have and, how to discover hidden organisational strengths.


8) Divisional Groups or Teams – our local culture

Use the cards to help the group address the question of what kind of atmosphere do we want to create in our local part of the organization? How can we do this?



9) During Redundancy and Other Difficult Times

Take green cards and positive emotions and high quality connections as a basis for a discussion on, ‘How can we consciously work to boost all of these in our organisation even as we have to do this difficult thing?

Take yellow cards and ask ‘How can we build these into our process for doing what it is we have to do?’


10) Increasing Motivation and Morale

Take positive deviance, positive energy networks, positive emotions, flourishing, strengths, engagement and appreciative inquiry cards as a basis for discussion asking, ‘How can we increase these in our organization?’ Use green cards to help identify collective processes to engage and motivate.

These are just 10 ideas to help you get started, I hope you find them useful, please do write and let us know how you do use the cards, and any ideas you have for improvements to them.



For further information on these alternative approaches to change, please contact us or phone 07973 782 715