Week #4 LeadWise Academy Assignment

On our Monday call this week, about leading with generosity, I contributed to our discussion early. “Yes” I said, “I ask for help often. I try to set up coffee meetings with a few people in my network each month and go in with three questions I am hoping to ask.”

Once we broke off into groups, someone mentioned the difference between asking for information, sharing ideas, and asking for help. Hmmm. Do I really ask for help? Or do I frame most asks as ‘discussion’, and exchange of ideas, rather than asking for help?

I tried to remember the last time I truly asked for help, without framing it as “Well, here’s what I’m thinking of doing, what do you think.” I had trouble recalling such an occasion recently.

My husband likes to joke (but only half joke) that if I ask him what he thinks I should do, I’ll listen and then do what I was going to do anyway. This is not my most endearing quality as a human.

My group members and I seemed to struggle with asking each other for help that would make use of our strengths or areas of knowledge, and that could be given without significant backstories and context. I tried to share a couple of general challenges I am facing at work (one related to my Immunity to Change map from last week). We agreed to jump onto a call and Mariola and Marco shared their thoughts and ideas about how I might work on achieving the change in mindset and behaviour I had outlined. I had no idea what to expect, and it was great. Each of them brought a very different lens to my situation, and I let our call feeling like I had got to look at the world through two pair of eyes that were not my own.

I don’t think I have ever had two people focus their considerable brain power on helping me to achieve a goal before — it was a wonderful feeling to be quiet and see where it went, and just soak in the feeling of being supported. I always delight in seeing people talk about things they know well and love; I felt this energy from both Mariola and Marco. I also left our call with two very useful approaches/tactics that I did not know going into our call, and I spent an hour reading about Theory U.

Thank you Mariola and Marco.

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