Thursday, March 20, 2014

Sometimes, all you have to do is ASK!

We are so afraid of being rejected that we completely overlook, avoid, refuse to do the simplest thing toward gaining our success.  What would that simple thing be?  The art form called: Asking.

Have you thought about simply asking?  Opening a business and you want customers? Have you thought about calling around and asking people to be your customers?  Want to be a singer or you have some other performance art to share? Have you thought of asking an art gallery or a talent show host if you can perform for them?  Simply asking can be one of the most powerful things you can do and you will be surprised with the results you get.

Clearly a lot of people are not getting far in their goals and dreams because they just refuse to ask.  In their minds they have already rehearsed all refusals and rejections they will receive. They have also convinced themselves that they have already been refused and rejected. For example:

A friend of mine became manager of a pet clinic, a place where they spay and neuter animals.  She's great at the job.  One day, she looked at the payment sheet (which has client information, how they wish to pay for services, etc.) and asked her staff why there was no donation portion to the sheet.  The clinic was a non-profit and most non-profits have donation opportunities on every slip of paper a client gets  because asking for donations is usually a primary source of revenue for nonprofits.  

The staff gave her many reasons -- and granted, they were pretty valid reasons -- why they didn't have a donation offer on the payment slip.  A few of the reasons were:
(1) They were working in a "depressed economic" area and the people can barely afford the service none-the-less a donation;
(2) It might put people off as begging;
(3) In the past, no one donated.

My friend reprinted the customer payment sheet with the request for a donation clearly printed on the bottom. She told her staff not to worry about pushing the request, just let the form do the asking. Within two months, the place pulled in a couple of thousand of dollars in donations, just because the company asked for a donation on a slip of paper!  

The technique and art of asking can be applied everywhere.  However, be careful, because there are three (3) keys of success to asking.  

(1) Ask with no expectation.  

I mean that, don't put weight into the request. Don't put your emotion onto it, your anxiety, your eagerness, your fear . . . that's wasted energy.  Look at it this way, it's just a question, a sound, a thought.  Keep the energy around your question as light as a thought.  Ask and don't expect a positive or negative result.  Basically, ask and move on.  If they are willing, great!  If they are not, no problem maybe someone else is willing or they will be willing another day.

(2) Ask in a creative and kind way.  

Recently I realized that I had a lot of famous people and organizations that I follow on Twitter.  I really enjoy their tweets and I've been following them for months and (some of them) years.  And it occurred to me that maybe they would follow me back if I did something outrageous like ASK them to follow me back.  Well, I knew this was Twitter and posts go fast, I knew that I needed an attention-getter, so I created this little meme:

I sent this to a few people and guess what, some of them actually followed me back!  They said they loved my little kitty meme.  Ha!  I'm gaining powerful and influential friends, you guys. The point here is, I asked and I asked in a way that gets attention.  If they follow me back, great!  If they don't, okay, I understand . . . I'll try again another day.  Which leads me to . . .

(3) Ask often and ask as often as it takes.

Have you ever heard the story about Les Brown, the motivational speaker and how he got a job at a radio station?  He was really young and had no experience. He went to the manager of the radio station asking if he could get a job.  The manager said there were no jobs for him.  So Les Brown went back everyday to that same manager, politely and enthusiastically asking for a job . . . he did this every day until the manager (tired of him coming around) hired him as an errand boy.  As an errand boy, Les Brown got to meet great celebrities like Diana Ross and Al Green and finally one day got the chance to go on air as a disc jockey.  Here was a man with no radio experience, no connections, no formal education, but he asked and he asked as often as it took to get to his goal.  

If Les Brown can do it and if I can do it, you can too.  So go out there, throw caution to the wind and ASK!

If you like this article, you should read:

Do me a favor . . . Click one of the icons below and share this article with friends! Leave a COMMENT by clicking on the little orange "comment" below right by "written by Telemill" notation. It's the little things you do that make the biggest difference. Thanks.


  1. Great advice, I have already reposted your blog to my page, Easter Hill UMC. Thanks

  2. I'm so glad that my advice is able to help you and your business grow. Let me know if ASKING made a difference in your church attendance next Sunday.


Let me know what you think! Really, I am interested.