Advice. What We Ask For When We Already Know the Answer?—Fortune Cookie Friday
This week’s note of wisdom from takeout challenged me.
“Sometimes advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer.”
I usually equate asking for advice with needing guidance when I don’t know what to do or say in a particular situation. But after thinking about it a bit more, I suppose I have on occasion requested advice from other small business professionals when I pretty much knew how to proceed but needed to bolster my confidence.
Most times, we seek advice from people with more experience, authority, or knowledge than we have about something. So it makes sense that we could know the right action to take and still want advice.
Advice As Confirmation
As a solopreneur or small business owner, getting validation that we’re heading in the right direction from someone we respect and admire can…
- Motivate us.
- Drive us to accomplish.
- Prevent us from procrastinating.
Consider Business Advice Carefully
When you ask other business professionals for advice, keep in mind they draw from their own frames of reference and experiences. They might very easily be able to relate to your unique circumstances, but in some instances they may not.
For example, if someone were to ask for my thoughts on what to tell an employee whose performance has been lackluster, I wouldn’t know how to best advise them. As a solopreneur, I don’t have any employees on payroll, and my assistant is a most capable, responsible independent contractor.
But that doesn’t mean you should discount advice when it doesn’t match what you were anticipating to hear. When receiving guidance that goes against what you were expecting—or hoping—to get, ask yourself these questions:
- Why was I expecting something different?
- Is it reasonable and rational?
- What outcome can I envision by following that advice instead of what I was proposing to do?
Know that just because you ask for advice doesn’t mean you have to take it. Think it through. And do what you believe will ultimately be best for your small business.
Your turn! What types of advice do you ask for from other small business professionals? Who do you turn to for advice?
Like leftovers? Check out these other Fortune Cookie Friday posts:
Better Is The Enemy Of Good
Do You Dare
Do It With A Determined Heart
By Dawn Mentzer Another Insatiable Solopreneur™ post