The Strongest Leaders Aren't Afraid to Ask for Help

November 4, 2022

The Strongest Leaders Aren't Afraid to Ask for Help

“Ask for help. Not because you are weak. But because you want to remain strong.” — Les Brown

Competence is a quality that we value in leaders. We want to ensure that, as leaders, we know what we are doing and that our people can be confident in our capabilities. However, being competent doesn’t mean being perfect. There will always be times when we need to ask for help. Sometimes, it can be the most significant sign of our strength as leaders.

We ask for help for things we are not the best at, and we delegate things to others whose expertise is better suited for the task. It takes a lot of confidence and wisdom to do both, and it also shows the people we lead that we value their talents and trust them. 

In fact, as leaders, it is part of our responsibility to not just work on becoming better but to provide opportunities for our people to improve and develop as well. Aside from being a learning opportunity for both the leader and the led, it opens up a candid conversation where both sides can communicate on similar grounds regardless of title or position. This open communication helps build relationships and establishes mutual trust and respect for both parties.

Asking for help shows your people that you are human, and it also shows your strength of character. A lot of high-achievers often find it difficult to ask for help, specifically because they are used to figuring things out by themselves. However, such pride could become a weakness. While it is indeed admirable to have competent leaders, it doesn’t do well for the team if only leaders are given opportunities to improve and figure things out.

By getting others involved in the problem-solving process, you save more time, utilize the talents you’ve hired, and tackle the problem from more perspectives. Ideas that you might not have been able to come up with on your own can be raised in such a collaborative manner.

Strong leaders don’t need to establish dominance by appearing strong. Real strength is knowing you are still capable despite not knowing it all. It is a valuable learning experience for both you and the people you are leading. When two or more heads work together, it opens new perspectives that would not have been unlocked had you worked on them separately.

Seeking mentorship and coaching to be better is also a sign of confidence and ownership. You are aware of things you need to learn to achieve greater goals and are not afraid to go after the knowledge.

And when we lead by example, our people follow. This improves overall team performance and collaboration and increases productivity, efficiency, and effectiveness. It also brings you and the team closer together, in mutual trust and respect, and provides space for your people to take ownership of the team’s shared goal.

Asking for help doesn’t make you weak—it makes you a better leader. 

Thanks for reading A Brilliant Tribe.