Shopping in a store recently, I found that I had some change in my pocket – just enough to make it easier for the assistant to give me a note back, rather than a load of coins.
So I offered it, so that could happen.
Instead, she said, ‘No, that’s fine I have plenty of change, thanks’.
Whilst I appreciated that she said it for the right reasons and was trying to help me out, I rather felt rebuffed.
Not only was I trying to make it easier for her, but it was good sense for me as well – less coins to lug around in my pocket.
Sometimes, although we are trying to be courteous and do our job, whether it be serving a customer in a shop, or even as we manage others, we sometimes feel that accepting help isn’t right.
We don’t feel comfortable accepting help – like that it shows us lacking somehow.
In fact accepting help is a fantastic tool for building relationships. It creates a partnership which cements a relationship powerfully.
If someone didn’t really want to offer help, but felt obliged, then accepting it helps them decide in a more authentic way in the future (“hmmm, so if I offer they might take me up on it…”).
Rarely do people offer help if they don’t want the other party to accept it. If they do and it is accepted, then they quickly stop doing it!
The acceptance of offered help is a win-win.
In management terms, acceptance of offered help not only releases a manager from some of their workload, but it is hugely developmental for their people.
It creates a feeling of accomplishment and feeling valued, which stimulates engagement and the thirst for more.
Accepting help is OK.