When it comes to asking for help in the workplace, many people balk at the idea. We often fear that we’ll appear weak, dumb, or needy. The truth is, the strongest people do ask for help when they need it. Asking in a professional manner will guarantee successful results.
Before asking anyone for help in the workplace, make sure you’ve tried various solutions to resolve the problem. Sometimes we forget the most obvious ones, so to avoid having your boss or co-worker offer you a simple solution you should have considered, work on resolving your issue as much as you can beforehand.
Once you have figured out that you actually do need help, approach a co-worker. Don’t be afraid, you’d be surprised by how flattered your co-worker will be that you asked them out of all the others. Ask them by first complimenting them on their work style and ask for them to help you brainstorm or work on a solution to your problem because two heads are always better than one.
If you are uncertain about the work you’re doing, it never hurts to ask to get a second look. Approach your boss by telling them that you have gathered potential ideas and ask if they can take a look at it. This way you know you are heading in the right direction and you’ll avoid making a mistake.
Another reason why we dodge asking for help is to push ourselves to resolve our own problems regardless of how long it takes. We often want to prove to ourselves that we can work out our problems on our own and fail to recognize when we need help until it’s too late. As much as your boss may appreciate your strong efforts, staying late in the office to work on something that has no end in sight is a waste of your time and your company’s. They want you to work efficiently and timely, and if that requires you asking for help, they won’t see it as a bad thing.
Remember, asking for help once doesn’t mean you’re going to always need to ask for help. Furthermore, asking for help on one minor detail in your project won’t bother anyone. As long you recognize when you actually do need help and ask in a professional manner, you can avoid looking like you’re taking advantage of your co-worker’s help. Instead, you’ll look like you’re doing what it takes to get your work done efficiently.
Have you ever had difficulty asking for help on a particular project? Comment below!
IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by betsyweber