Asking For Help: 3 Tips in Leading a Productive Conversation

Asking for help can be a scary thing. At Achieve, we focus on learning what motivates you and “why”, uncovering the best version of yourself, and bringing your Best Life to a realization so that you can make an impact you desire and experience personal and professional fulfilment. However, we, at times, need to seek help. A lack of knowledge in a specific area can be seen as but is in no way indicative of a lack of intelligence. In fact, we are constantly learning, and there is no way for one person to know everything. It’s actually more of how smart you are when you can identify what you do and don’t know. 

Many times, asking for help is seen as a shortcoming or failure on our part. So, we choose to figure things out on our own and end up doing them wrong, or we just procrastinate indefinitely. So, how do we muster up the courage to just ask?

1. Doing Research Beforehand

Whatever you need help with, always try to:

  1. Identify if this is a question for a person or if this is a question for Google, do this by searching Google first.
  2. If you can’t find the solution to your problem within the first two pages of your Google search, this is definitely a question for a person. 
  3. Try to identify the exact issue that you are having. 

Doing research means affirming what you know to pinpoint precisely what you don’t know. As a result, you are far more knowledgeable than you give yourself credit for. A complete understanding of your knowledge base helps boost confidence and ultimately leads to a more productive conversation.

2. Enter the Encounter with a Plan

What are you looking for? Advice? A solution? Guidance? Figure out what kind of help you need rather than just saying, “I need help”. You are in charge of this encounter, so it is up to you to tell the person what you need. 

Having a clear idea of how you want to run this conversation is an excellent way to not only make you feel more comfortable but will also give the other person a much better idea of what you’re looking for.

3. Asking the Right Questions 

There is no such thing as a dumb question, honestly. However, how you word your questions can be the difference between a constructive conversation and a conversation that just goes in circles. So make sure that the language you use is relevant to the problem you are having. 

Be concise, using only the pertinent information to the problem in your questions. Make sure that you are clear about what you are struggling with and what kind of solution you are looking for. 

And most importantly: have patience! Some solutions are more complex to find than others.

“Understanding a question is half an answer.”

– Socrates

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