Asking for a Favor
When is the last time you asked someone for a favor? It might have been a while. Perhaps you felt your request would be intrusive or position you as someone in need and you wanted to avoid any such perception.
Now think about the last time someone asked for a favor from you. What was your response? You were probably helpful – most people are. You probably sought solutions for your friend and were genuinely interested in guiding them to a successful resolution.
If you felt happy to help, live by the assumption that others are happy to help you when you need it. You might be surprised by how little resistance you encounter because most people truly like to help others. That’s why we coach youth sports, volunteer at food banks, buy girl scout cookies and give to charities. Helping others always feels good and it gives us a sense of being useful.
When you ask for a favor, be confident that they will say yes. In other words, don’t start by saying “You probably don’t want to do this, but would you consider…” If someone asked me for a favor that way, I would be predisposed to saying “no.” Instead, say “I’m looking for a little guidance on an idea I’m tossing around and I think you would be the perfect person to hash this out with. Can I take you out to lunch Tuesday?” The difference in how you approach your request will decide your answer before you ask the question. If your friend or colleague is unable to give you what you need, ask someone else. An initial “no” doesn’t mean that is the only response you will get.
The next time you would like a little input on your new design, need assistance in connecting with someone, are looking for a testimonial or seek a running partner to help you lose weight, just ask someone confidently. They will be glad to help!