People are often willing to perform favours, if you ask the right way




Asking Favours – and Getting Them

If you want someone to do something for you, here is an easy, non-manipulative trick. Be Polite. Ask, rather than demand. And, most importantly, tell the other person why she can do it better than you could. For example:

  • Could you organise these flowers in some vases? You have a more artistic eye than I do and will surely do a better job.

  • Would you mind calling the client and explaining the situation. You are more diplomatic than I am.

  • Could you please handle the party invitations. You are so much better at organising these things than I am – I would surely make a mess of it.

  • Would you have the time to draw an illustration for the invitations? You do such wonderful drawings.

The one thing you absolutely must avoid is asking another person to do something for you because you are too busy or do not have the time. When you do this, you are implying that your time is more important than the other person’s time. You may well believe this to be the case. But the other person surely disagrees on this point.

On the other hand, provided you follow my advice, you will find that people are much happier to help you with tasks and take pride in helping you. Why? Because you have indicated that you admire and value their contribution.

We all like to be complimented. We all like to be recognised for our skills and the value we can contribute to tasks.

And if you enjoyed this article, please share it with your friends. I would do so myself, but you are more popular and persuasive than I am!


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Jeffrey Baumgartner
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Erps-Kwerps (near Leuven & Brussels) Belgium




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My other web projects 100s of articles, videos and cartoons on creativity - possibly useful things I have learned over the years. reflections on international living and travel. - paintings, drawings, photographs and cartoons by Jeffrey