One of the advices I always give people when I’m doing a presentation or training course is: Help others to help you.
People have a genuine tendency to help each other.
But there are barriers. The five most important barriers are:
1) It costs them a lot of time.
2) The way the question is asked is in a “begging” way or in a demanding way, instead of sharing a goal.
3) They don’t know you enough yet to make a connection to a trusted friend or relationship.
4) Your question is not clear or too vague.
5) It is not clear to them which action is required.
Now you know these five barriers it is up to you to make them as small as possible.
Five barriers might seem a lot, but in reality they are easy to deal with.
What is my advice?
1) Be aware of the time constraints of what you want them to do for you. Also make clear to them how much time you need from them. Most of the time they have a wrong perception. They think they have to spend more time on your request than you actually want.
2) Share your goal or what you want to accomplish in a positive way. This has a tremendous effect on people’s willingness to help you.
3) Don’t ask people you have just met to recommend you to their network as a possible supplier or employee. However you can ask them to make a connection when you are looking for suppliers, partners, expertise or employees yourself!
4) Make your question as specific as possible. We tend to keep our questions vague hoping we get more responses. And maybe we do, but the quality will not be very high and we are both wasting the time of the people from our network and our own time as well.
5) If you want them to make a connection or just help you move some boxes for a few minutes, please tell them that and how to do that in the best way for them and you. Again many times they might think that you require half a day of work, while you just want them to do one specific action which will only require 5 minutes of their time.
Keep this advice in mind and test it out for yourself.
In the next week, before you decide to NOT ask for help, please read these tips again and DO ask someone to help you.
You will experience that you will get many positive responses and that you will get things done much faster!
Have a great networking week !