Written by Joanne Sacco

Why asking for help makes you a better leader

Asking for help is hard.
After all, you should be able to handle what’s thrown at you during your workday, because it’s your job to. Right?
The best leaders know the value of asking for help. They recognise it’s impossible for them to be an expert in all areas. For those in the digital space, this is even more so with things changing faster than it’s humanly possible to keep up.
Those who lead effectively fully understand the merits in asking for help and here’s just a few …

Asking for help shows strength, not weakness

Being open to say ‘hey, I’d like your advice about XXX’, or ‘My wheelhouse is not in that area. I know yours is so can you help me out?’ requires an immense amount of courage.
No one likes admitting they can’t do it all on their own. But doing it shows your strength of character. You’re not afraid to look inside and admit your strengths and weaknesses. And you’re not afraid to ask others for help in the areas you’re lacking. This not only makes YOU stronger, but it makes THE TEAM you’re leading stronger as well.

Asking for help is great for self-preservation

Trying to do it all yourself puts you on the fast track to burnout. You can only do so much before your brain says, ‘no more’. So, in essence, reaching out for assistance protects both you and your team. A focused and calm leader is clearly more beneficial than a frazzled and chaotic one.

Asking for help makes you more efficient

If you’re working on a problem you can’t solve, the best thing you can do is ask for help. Why? Because in the vast majority of cases, opening yourself up to a fresh perspective from your team will produce better (and often, faster) solutions than struggling on your own would.
Which leads me to my next point …

Asking for help is often the smartest solution to problem

Your team is likely made up of a number of disparate individuals who all possess talent in diverse areas. Good leaders not only understand this but draw on it.
When you next encounter an obstacle and your skillset is lacking, ask your team for their support. It’s probable one or more have the expertise to help, and will willingly do so. They’ll offer up fresh insights that you might not have reached on your own.

Asking for help grows your team

Seeking help from your team strengthens them. It allows them to grow individually and collectively.
Giving your team the chance to solve an issue for you provides them with an amazing sense of accomplishment. It allows them to develop professionally, but it also improves the relationship you have with them. It shows you trust their abilities and value their opinion.
As a side benefit, asking your team members for help increases the chances they will reciprocate when they get stuck or stressed.
As you can see asking for help is a great way to actually strengthen – not weaken – your leadership. If you’d like to grow more of your team leading skills, Finite’s article about encouraging team feedback has a number of pointers.

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