BigStock: What’s the Best Way
to Say “Help Me, Please”?
Ever wonder why some folks seem to have a slew of people ready to help them achieve their goals? Is their cause, idea, or project really better? Do they really know better people? Or is it the way they ask?
On September 22-23, I’m speaking at Pitch Refinery. Check out the agenda for the interactive event that proves
“Every business has a story…
how you tell it makes all the
If you get a chance to be there, you’ll find the power of story to move people to action faster, easier, and more meaningfully.
How to Convince the Best People to Support Your Cause, Project, or Idea
In my role at the Pitch Refinery event, I’ll be outlining How to Leading Passionate Employees and Clients — How to get everyone who helps your business involved in sharing your best true story so that your business thrives. In that context, I’ll be talking about five steps to enlisting help on any cause project or idea.
In the spirit if a sneak preview, I’m sharing them here.
- Build your network before you need it. We might be on a team or leading one. We might be new to the industry. Maybe we’ve been working alone on a stealth project. Whatever our situation, success means we’ll need the help of others getting to know our story and sharing it. We’re better together than we are alone. As early as you can, share what you’re doing. Vvalue the people who take interest and invite the best them to get close so that they become part of the story too.
- Talk about them, not you. Every writer, teacher and storyteller knows that the opening of of a story is more than just information, it’s the moment that establishes a connection with the audience — the people we want to reach. Get to know what moves the people who love you. Get to know what wastes their tiem. Then when you reach out to ask for help you can start with them, not you. That will turn your offer from
“We are a ___ that is trying to [stop world hunger] by ___. Akimi is a child parses out her rice each night so that it will last longer. You can help make those meals last longer.
“We’ve all had that horrible, deep pit in the stomach feeling of working on an empty stomach. It changes how we see the world. It’s hard to imagine what it would be like to live with that empty feeling for months, but some do. Imagine how that sets their world view.
- Come out from behind the curtain. A true collaboration, an invitation to participate in building something great, cannot occur if we stay in our office, hold our territory, or hide behind our website expecting others to show up while we tell them what to do for us. Come out when you reach out. Show your “face.” Say hello before you ask and get to know who you’re asking. Build a relationship so that people understand that you want their participation not just their money or their time. And so that they see that participation goes both ways.
- Turn the pitch into an invitation. The reason most requests offers, and asks, are requested is because the size of the “ask” is far greater than the foundation of trust we’ve built. Trust is built through proof that I’m safe to have faith in you. To establish trust most quickly, show the people you want to help you that you see, hear, and understand them by building an invitation that is easy to accept because it fits seamlessly into their lives, saves them time, and offers and outcome that has meaning to them.
- Celebrate your heroes. Allow for mutation. Leave room for ideas that are bigger, better, easier, and more meaningful than your own. Listen to those who start to participate. Invite the best to be hands-on and minds-on with what you’re doing. It’s not if you build it they will come. It’s if they build it they will bring their friends.
People whose offers always get great participation have figured something out. They focus on how to make supporting their cause, project, or idea easier, faster, and more meaningful for the best people to participate. Do the same by concentrating on the people, not the brilliance of the idea or cause. It’s not a pitch or promotion. It’s leadership — building something we can’t build alone.
What are you doing to invite people to support your cause, project or idea?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Work with Liz on your business!!