Get All Access for $5/mo

How to Ask for the Help You Need To Succeed Sometimes, getting help within your organization can be the biggest saboteur of your success. With these three tips, you can become a pro at advocating for yourself, and make sure there's nothing standing in your way.

By Alexa Dagostino Edited by Micah Zimmerman

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Asking for help is never fun.

Now, I know what you are thinking. If you need help, why not just ask?

The truth is, asking for help puts us in a vulnerable position. When we ask for help, we admit we don't know something to somebody we might not be comfortable sharing that weakness with. Sometimes, we even have to ask for help multiple times from the same person, making us feel embarrassed and even causing us to doubt our abilities.

But nothing is worse than pushing past all of those fears, asking for help, and getting the classic "ask someone else" or "I have already told you this" answer.

The truth is, we can't all get it perfect the first time. And there will be points in your career where you will need some help. You will be asked to do something you don't know how to do, you will want a second pair of eyes on a project, or you might even need some advice.

But getting help seems to be a lot easier said than done. How do we actually get the help we need?

Here are three things you should be mindful of as both an employee and a CEO to ensure everyone gets the help they need.

Related: Asking for Help Might Be the Key to Your Success

1. Be assertive when asking for help

One of the biggest problems I see with my clients' employees not getting the help they need is that they aren't very assertive when they ask for help. Sometimes, asking for help can be uncomfortable, and you don't want to silence the voice in your head telling you that you can figure it out yourself, but the only way to really know is by asking – and not with any wavering doubt.

If you ask for help like it's an afterthought, the person you're asking won't make it their priority. When you ask for help, don't just say, "Hey, if you have a minute, would you mind looking at this?" and then follow it up with, "take your time. There is no rush at all, don't worry about it."

The person you are asking for help is probably busy. If you don't express that you need assistance and you need it now, you aren't going to get it.

Be assertive when you ask, and take it a step further. A great way to do this is by saying "Hey, I am really struggling with this problem. Would you be available anytime today to help me out? I can meet you at ___."

When you approach the situation this way, you assert that you need help, need it now and are willing to put the work in to make it happen. It is a lot easier for your coworker, boss or anyone you need to speak with to answer when they're free, as opposed to a general "I'll help you later."

Related: 5 Ways to Get Better at Asking for Help

2. Use your network!

The internet will not tell you everything. Sure, using it to find answers to some of your problems is a very effective way to meet your needs in a hurry. But it would help if you looked into utilizing your network for the tougher, more abstract problems.

The people around you are some of the most fruitful resources you can ask for. Chances are, they know how to help you, or they at least know someone you do.

Don't be afraid to reach out to those around you (assertively) and ask for their input. (This is also a fantastic way to make genuine relationships and future clients).

3. Make your organization user-friendly

For all of you leaders reading, my biggest piece of advice for you is to make your organization a place where help is possible. The last thing you want is your employees to tell their coworkers, "don't bother. No one gives any help around here."

Check-in with your employees regularly, ask if they need any help, and most importantly, keep yourself familiar with the tasks your employees are performing, so you can be a resource to them.

You are your employees' biggest resource, so don't hesitate to share some knowledge!

Overall, the best thing you can do is not to be afraid to ask. It is hard and can be uncomfortable, but it gets easier over time. Once you become unafraid of asking for what you need, your success will skyrocket.

Related: 2 Ways to Get What You Want: Ask and Attract

Alexa Dagostino

Founder/CEO of Thynktank Coaching & Thynkfuel Media

Alexa Dagostino is an award-winning serial entrepreneur, marketer, business coach, consultant and investor. She helps entrepreneurs and small businesses skyrocket their business through strategy, marketing, sales, media and leadership.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Growing a Business

He Immigrated to the U.S. and Got a Job at McDonald's — Then His Aversion to Being 'Too Comfortable' Led to a Fast-Growing Company That's Hard to Miss

Voyo Popovic launched his moving and storage company in 2018 — and he's been innovating in the industry ever since.


ChatGPT is Becoming More Human-Like. Here's How The Tool is Getting Smarter at Replicating Your Voice, Brand and Personality.

AI can be instrumental in building your brand and boosting awareness, but the right approach is critical. A custom GPT delivers tailored collateral based on your ethos, personality and unique positioning factors.

Business Ideas

63 Small Business Ideas to Start in 2024

We put together a list of the best, most profitable small business ideas for entrepreneurs to pursue in 2024.

Business News

Is the AI Industry Consolidating? Hugging Face CEO Says More AI Entrepreneurs Are Looking to Be Acquired

Clément Delangue, the CEO of Hugging Face, a $4.5 billion startup, says he gets at least 10 acquisition requests a week and it's "increased quite a lot."

Business News

You Can Now Apply to Renew Your U.S. Passport Online — But There's a Catch

The U.S. State Department officially launched the beta program this week.

Business News

Sony Pictures Entertainment Purchases Struggling, Cult-Favorite Movie Theater Chain

Alamo Drafthouse originally emerged from bankruptcy in June 2021.