It can be so difficult to even consider asking for someone’s help when you are used to handling everything on your own. Whatever the reasons behind this, we can all benefit from a little support sometimes. How would it be if you could ask for, trust others enough or accept the help to get the job done?
As a team leader or manager knowing how to ask for help and being comfortable accepting it, is a vital part of your success. As the boss your ability to select, delegate, motivate, facilitate growth and align your team is one of the top priorities for establishing a focused, solid team that can be lead. Your responsibility is making sure the right people not only come together, but also work together productively.
Asking for help includes knowing when to say ‘no’ to being involved in a problem that is not yours to solve. If you have delegated properly and are confident you’re your team has all the support necessary you have taken care of your side of the job. Allowing the person whose responsibility is it to cover this issue, means you are saying ‘no’ to yourself. What you are actually saying ‘no’ to is your belief that you have to handle everything on your own. With this you are saying ‘yes’ to allow someone to help you …in fact by doing his or her job. Leaders are to encourage people to make independent decisions as it greatly improves motivation. Encouraging this involves ‘asking’ for their help.
The time to think about the teams goals and performance will be created by accepting this ‘help’.
Member of a team:
As a co-worker in a team you are also in a position that requires asking for help at times. You might not be able to completely understand part of a project or the vision around it and asking a colleague to brainstorm with you would help. However you hesitate to ask because you make the assumption they will think less of you or your abilities. Good team players share information, knowledge, and experience and are comfortable asking for help. If you are open to a request for assistance and take the initiative to offer help then asking for it yourself falls into being a good team player and co-worker.
Ask yourself these questions if you wish to find a way to feel more comfortable with asking for help:
1. What might happen if I do not ask for help or support?
2. On a scale of 1 – 10, how bad would that be?
3. What will happen if I do not get this completed, sorted out or clarified?
4. What will happen if I do complete, sort out or get clarification?
5. Access the two scenarios and determine consider what your next step will be at this point.
6. Who can you ask for help? What resources and skill do you already have to support this situation?
7. How do you feel about having that person’s help? Is he or she the right person, or are there others you could call upon?
8. How can you help them to help you? What exactly do you need to communicate in order for them to help you in the way you need it?
9. Make a list of what steps you need to take to complete the project. A mental list is good enough, if not, write down the list in order of priority.
10. Delegate and communicate clearly to your chosen support person(s).
11. Realize that next time it will already be easier to ask, you now have some practice!
If you let someone help you, in fact you are helping him or her by showing trust in their abilities, which means, you are helping two people.
A Practical Handbook