A leader is the one responsible for guiding the whole team to reach any particular goals. This person sits on the highest rank in the group and carries the highest level of commitment. In every organization, these people hold the title, Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
They are responsible for setting the company's image, planning future projects, making decisions, guiding the team, communicate with various notable people, and the list goes on and on. Hence, naturally, everyone under the CEO will follow and rely on the leader due to these amount of responsibilities.
Everyone is expecting you to have all the answers to their questions, but who can you reach out for help?
No one is a know-it-all, and despite the highest position, you may not have all the answers to all the problems in your company. It can put a lot of pressure when you have so many expectations from everyone. It can be daunting.
Plus, you may hesitate to ask for help because you believe that you should be a self-reliant leader that can handle all problems. Although it is a good leadership trait to possess, having no balance between being self-reliant and being vulnerable will not help you and your team in any way.
Let's dive into how restricting yourself from asking for help can be damaging to you and your team.
Asking for assistance from others is sometimes misunderstood by leaders as an indication of their own cluelessness or flaws. This causes shame and embarrassment, prompting leaders to decide to go at it alone rather than seek support from others.
Leaders, in particular, believe that they are expected to know everything and that trying to get help or recommendations is out of the question because it could signal that they are in a position that they are unable to perform.
On the other hand, fear of requesting help is not only about not being capable, but it is also about feeling like a burden, imposing, or being too needy. However, reaching out to others for assistance is not a sign of weakness, and in a world where most people are hesitant to ask for help and support, it is truly an act of strength and confidence.
Asking for assistance demonstrates strength, confidence, and resourcefulness. It is a remarkable leadership trait. Therefore, having colleagues with you who can assist you in a variety of situations is very beneficial. Plus, it is also a sign of humanity, and it can make you more approachable in the future if you are a leader in your organization.
Leaders take on a lot of duties. Although this is a noble trait, they have a tendency for taking full responsibility for everything. They have the impression that they must do everything that comes their way and that receiving help would imply that they cannot cope with their responsibilities.
Some of them believe they are capable of handling everything and that seeking help is undoubtedly not an option. They assume that they will be viewed as a novice. Plus, they believe that requesting assistance is cheating and that the joy of achievement is not the same if they have gotten support.
Asking for assistance appears to be a violation of the unstated norm of accomplishing goals on one's own. The primary motivation for this action is that asking for help is a sign of failure.
People seek assistance from leaders, not the other way around. That is the mindset that leads to leaders believing that they must be the ones who have all the answers rather than the ones who seek assistance.
They could outsource, assign, or even remove some of these tasks. Despite that, they frequently keep projects, tasks, and responsibilities longer than they should, resulting in slower growth. Eventually, it affects the quality of their work.
These sorts of ideas lead to behaviours that keep individuals stuck in a cycle of facing it alone, suffering in silence, and bearing the weight of responsibility on their shoulders alone. Therefore, not putting the effort to ask for assistance is putting so much burden on yourself.
There is a reason why leaders are in charge. They press forward, discovering new fields while conquering others. They are frequently so far ahead of the group that they find themselves alone and without someone to lean on for support when they look around. They learn to rely on themselves as a result of their solitude.
According to RHR International 2012 CEO Snapshot Survey, the intensity of the CEO's job combining with the lack of colleagues to depend on, promotes the possible detrimental feeling of seclusion among chief executives. 50% of all the CEO recipients mentioned that they feel lonely in their jobs, as they have a workload that no one else comprehends.
Hence, it is why they cannot approach their friends or families on this matter. Apart from that, they mentioned that they feel burden by their position, as they have to make decisions alone. They do not have anyone to collaborate on it, or others do not understand their perspectives. Therefore, they isolate themselves and prevent from asking for assistance.
CEOs come with the misconception that they are capable of taking on the world without any assistance. However, what people fail to see is that they are just ordinary individuals. CEOs do go through the same emotions and roadblocks as any layman. Nevertheless, it is still difficult for them to seek help due to pressure placed on their shoulders that arise with the title. Below is a discussion on the repercussions of not inquiring for assistance when required.
When leaders tend to be rigid in seeking assistance, it acts as a hindrance. It is because of the lack of a fresh perspective. The resistance is due to the gatekeeping of the current visions, ideas, and prior knowledge.
The ability to communicate vital information to others enables through asking for assistance. Resources, bandwidth, and strategic growth are all affected by knowledge transfer.
By gaining new insight from external individuals, it helps leaders expand their knowledge and perspective. It would translate to creating innovative plans. In return, this empowers them to thrive in the competitive landscape.
Followed closely to the above point would be slow growth. This point is relatively self-explanatory. However, an example would help illustrate better.
When one faces a slight change or trouble with their car, the automatic response would be to call a mechanic. By delaying, it would cause more damage and slow the function of the motor vehicle.
Comparably, the hesitancy of leaders not seeking help hinders the growth of the company. Asking for help is a smart way to make the most of the resources available to you.
Withstanding to question and seek help is a surefire method to stifle growth and create organizational bottlenecks. It will translate towards a negative impact on the productivity and profitability of the company.
Burnout and exhaustion is a common scenario faced by any individual. Sadly, it is ever more present with leaders. Due to pressure, in needing to do everything right, it leaves little room to breathe.
Seeking assistance is commonly viewed as a weakness in leaders especially. Unbeknownst to them, it is a valuable leadership trait. Not many leaders can admit struggle and seek assistance.
It is proven rewarding, as the leaders are looking at that the best interest of the company. Very few can do so due to the inner conflict of wanting control and mask the struggle faced.
Leaders who try to do everything themselves are prone to burnout. The more they take on, the more difficult it becomes to succeed. Trying to achieve your goals on your own is a long, lonely, and arduous path.
In conclusion, avoiding assistance would lead to detrimental effects for both the leader and company. As mentioned earlier, it hinders the growth of the organization. It also adds further stress and possible burnout for the leader.
Both of these are two horrible combinations since they would contribute to the failure of the business. After all, human capacity can only take so much at one go. Therefore, it is encouraged for leaders to seek assistance when required.
If we try to accomplish everything on our own, we will not be able to do it satisfactorily. According to social learning theory, we learn more effectively when we work together. As a result, we assist each other in heightening our perception of various topics and providing each other with the confidence and support to implement what we have learned to our immense personal and company's benefit.
Therefore, you must determine what you require the most assistance with right now in your entrepreneurial career. You have to reflect on yourself, be self-aware that will help you create a list of your assets and flaws. Consider your most major existing problems and top priorities.
In this way, you should know where you require the most assistance. It is a very straightforward task, but it is extremely helpful to identify what you need from others. Plus, it is a good idea to repeat this habit frequently because it will most likely be going to alter over time. Moreover, you will learn to change your mindset that relying on your team members is a leadership trait that will lead you to glorious success.
A business mentor is a professional person who provides support, guidance, excellent advice, and motivation to entrepreneurs. These are the individuals who have years of expertise in any business sector and can be said to have "been there, done that."
It is wholly beneficial for any entrepreneur to seek out mentors for personal and professional development. When you learn from the greatest, you can only improve yourself and your organisation. Whether you are looking for new ideas, adjusting to a new position, striving to grow, or choosing a risky new path, business mentors can assist you at any stage of your career.
A skilled mentor provides you with constructive, direct, yet kind comments on any errors you have made. Someone who is willing to point out your mistakes and correct you is essential, as you will make better decisions and emerge stronger when you have someone like them on your side.
Read more on Business Mentors here.
It is a place where people with similar goals can share their issues and collaborate to find solutions. It provides a support structure, peer accountability, and a platform for self-improvement. This peer advisory group's ultimate goal is to provide valuable peer-to-peer education on a variety of topics in order to achieve success.
In basic terms, it is an educational entrepreneurship programme in which each group is made up of people with diverse backgrounds, values, and beliefs who are united by a common aim. Consider how much new information you will gain from them!
Members of the mentorship group will help you recognise the opportunities that you are overlooking. They will provide you with more feedback and constructive criticism on your ideas and abilities.
As a result, the group help you gain clarity on all of your questions and encourage you to think outside the box by broadening your knowledge and skills to tackle them.
Read more on mentorship program here.
Overall, asking for help is not a sign of weakness, but rather, it is a resourceful gesture that emphasizes our humanity. We must set our mindset that asking for assistance and receiving support from peers was not only acceptable but expected, as we tapped into something meaningful and more fundamental than only workplace interaction.
The perks and worth of being able to reach out to one another are limitless. Although asking for help can be tough and might diminish our self-esteem, that persistent part of our ego that claims we can accomplish anything, can also help us become stronger, more successful, and more confident. Most importantly, you possess a powerful leaderful trait. Learn to balance between being a self-reliant, independent leader and being a vulnerable and approachable leader.
Give it a shot. You might be surprised by the outcome.
Finding the help you need is part of your job as an entrepreneur, and learning to ask for it will bring you that much closer to authenticity.Mike Smerklo