How do personal mind-sets change during an organization development intervention and how are these transitions associated with the intervention characteristics? In a qualitative theory-driven case study based in South Africa, the transitions of six individuals during an appreciative inquiry were scrutinized longitudinally for first-order and second-order changes. Five individuals showed first-order changes and two showed second-order changes. The engaging and emergent characteristic of the intervention explained the majority of these cognitive transitions. A third type of change in mind-set emerged in four of the cases: the development of an appreciative stance, which we classify as a form of cognitive effort rather than a cognitive transition. We conclude that interventions focusing on positivity may lead to participants developing an appreciative stance, but successful organization development might not occur without sufficient engagement in an emergent process. We provide some guidelines for practitioners for conducting an engaging emergent change process.