Ask, don't tell

Ask, don’t tell

You can guide a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.

Giving unprompted advice is ineffective. To influence people into following advice lead them to ask for it with guiding questions.

Instead of giving someone advice, ask them for advice on how others in a similar situation should tackle it. Doing so boosts their self esteem, making them responsible for the ideas they generate. Since people feel obligated to follow-through on their Commitment and consistency, they will be more likely to follow their own advice.

When someone asks for advice, they are ==more likely== to follow it than if the advice were unsolicited.

Guiding people to ask for advice has 3 key benefits:

  1. It reduces the risk of people becoming defensive
  2. Unsolicited advice decreases the confidence of the recipient
  3. It helps Bring the audience through the journey of a decision

Even if there’s a clear solution, it’s important for someone to go through the journey of discovering it. Doing so helps form the connection between the problem and the solution, increasing internalization and buy-in.