In a recent team building session, the participants said they really enjoyed learning more about their colleagues, but they also appreciated understanding themselves better and they really valued the opportunity to practice what I call the recipe for success – asking for what you need.
Accept Responsibility for Getting What You Need
Whether coaching an executive or working with a team, my message is the same: learn what you need and ask for it. It can be really hard for high achievers to admit that they need something from someone else, but no one succeeds in a vacuum and we can’t expect others to read our minds.
Specifics Help You Tell Others What You Need
Most people are willing to help their colleagues, and being specific makes that easier. If you need more time to reflect on a complex issue and you are being pressured to make a decision quickly, you could explain, “I can give you an answer now or I can give you a better answer at noon tomorrow.”
Know What Contributes to Your Success
You may be a very team-oriented person who also needs to have your individual efforts recognized. Your colleagues are probably not aware of this need because your usual behavior doesn’t give them a clue. This makes it especially important for you to let your boss and key colleagues know that you are a lot more productive when you are able to measure and receive feedback on your performance.
Now that you have the recipe for success – whip up something good!