As much as I hate the saying ‘No man is an island,’ I have to admit that it’s true in the workplace. It’s difficult to get ahead without getting help from people but not everyone realises this. Even if you work best alone or are an introvert, from time to time, you will need other people’s help. Here are 3 tips to make it easier to get people to help you in the workplace:
1. Be nice to people even when you don’t need their help
Smiling at someone you never smile at just because you’re about to ask them for something has to be one of the fakest moves ever. It works sometimes, especially when it’s a woman smiling at a man, but often, it’s a sure-fire way to get a resounding ‘no’. Usually, people who are helpful in situations like this know the other person is being fake but they decide to help in spite of the other person’s shallow behavior. One day, they will decide they are tired of being used and will refuse to help. Be as friendly as you can to everyone. That way, people are more inclined to be of assistance when you need them.
2. Make it worth their while
No matter how much they may deny it, everyone wants something in return for giving. At first, you may find it difficult to think of a way to pay someone back for what they do for you but if you think about it thoroughly, you’ll come up with something. It doesn’t have to be anything big. For example, if you constantly ask for help carrying out a task using a particular software, ask the person you usually turn to to teach you how to do the task yourself and tell them that once you learn it, you won’t bother them anymore. You learn how to use the software properly and add another skill to your repertoire while the other person gets you out of their hair. It’s a win-win situation.
3. Treat people the way they want to be treated
Usually I advise that you treat people the way you would like to be treated but in this situation, treating them the way they would like to be treated would work better. If you type something up quickly for a colleague and don’t think it necessary for the person to thank you, don’t assume that the person who downloaded some data you need for your presentation won’t appreciate your thanks. Go the extra mile in showing your gratitude.
This article isn’t about using people or getting people to do your work for you. Behaving like that will only make people resent you. It’s about finding ways to help people help you. To do your best work, you will need people at some point and for that reason, you should remember these tips. You never know when they will be helpful.
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