I’m always genuinely amazed at people who refuse help.
You’ve probably seen this scenario before: A manager is struggling with a department matter or a problem employee. The manager asks their colleagues for opinions and suggestions. Not only do the co-workers offer ideas but they offer to help implement them. What does the manager do? Turn it all down and try to handle it alone. Why? Because in their mind, that’s what leaders do.
Listen, being a leader isn’t about making all the decisions or doing everything yourself. It’s about asking for help when you need it and not flat-out refusing help when it’s offered. The absolute worst thing a manager can do is ask for someone’s opinion and then do nothing with the information.
Now, you might be saying to yourself – what if the idea/suggestion is unsolicited or worthless? Well, there are a couple things you can do:
If that so-called *worthless* idea sparked a better course of action, let the person know that they set the thought process in motion. That way, you’re not saying their idea was a flop … but it gave rise to something else. You’re telling the person they contributed to the outcome.
If someone offers unsolicited help, instead of refusing their assistance … consider it an opportunity to build relationships and find another way to use them. Tell the person that you’d like them to be a part of the project in some way. If you flat out decline someone’s offer to help, don’t be surprised when they never offer to help you again.
Even the best managers need help or a sounding board or even someone else altogether to get the job done. It’s how those moments are handled that really sets great leaders apart from the rest.