When we were kids, our parents helped us with a million things. Eating. Tying our shoes. Putting on layers of clothing for going outside in the Winter. On top of that most likely they taught us to help others. “Help your little brother get buckled in his car seat.”
We learned helping from our schools (UNICEF milk cartons) and our churches (the infamous “plate”). I believe the term used was “charity”. Helping those less fortunate….or less capable.
Now we’re all grown up and when we try to help people they look at us like we have two heads. What’s with that? All we want to do is help. “I want my employee to be a better clerk.” “I want my son to be a better baseball pitcher.” “I want my wife to cook better spaghetti.”
This need to add to someone else’s fortune just because we can is terribly human. But then, so is rejecting it. Why? Because we don’t want to NEED any help. It defines us (to ourselves) as weak or incomplete. No matter how badly we may need the result promised by the help, most frequently we will reject it….it just hurts our pride too much.
So how can we “help” someone? Describe an assistance that has promise to bring what the person wants. Seems rather convoluted, doesn’t it? However if I WANT to become a better clerk, pitcher, or spaghetti cooker, then setting an option for me to partake of your available genius (without the mention of “help”) may get the job done.
We may want or need what you have to offer. But placed in a “rescue” format, only the desperate will accept.
A. “I just want to help you be a better clerk.”
B. “I learned some stuff when I was training that you might find useful if you want.”
One thought on “Corporate CoDriver: How to have your ‘help’ accepted.”
The best approach I’ve ever heard was what I call the Harvey Pennick approach. Most golf coaches focused on a golfer’s deficiency. Pretty soon the student’s head was full of things to fix. Harvey, regardless of how bad the student, would find something good about the student’s swing. “I really like the way you turned your shoulder” would be a Harvey response even though the rest of the swing was atrocious. After a while the student was a golfer. Results? Tom Kite, Ben Crenshaw, Kathy Witworth.