Have you ever found yourself sitting at a table, staring at two cups of coffee and someone looking for your advice? Welcome to my life. If you get serious about developing your leadership skills, this will become common for you too.
In this situation, I’ve found people to fall into one of three general categories.
- The first is absolutely puzzled by the request and literally has nothing for you.
- The second is humbled by the request and genuinely wishes to provide the best wisdom that they can muster.
- The third is ready to give their unsolicited opinion before anyone even sits down at the table. Everyone loves this guy. He’s got all the answers.
Today, I’m going to talk about the third person’s potential thought process. If you identify with any of these steps, then please do come back tomorrow. Your friends will be immensely grateful.
Here’s how you give really bad advice…
Step 1. Do Not Seek Understanding.
The first thing you’re going to want to do is to immediately assume that you understand the situation. As soon as the person gets done talking, you’re going to want to jump to the nearest conclusion. Your goal is to immediately put a label on the problem.
Step 2. Stay Right at The Surface.
Make no attempts to dig any deeper. All of the information you would need in order to help this person is sitting right there in front of you. There certainly aren’t any hidden agendas or emotions at play. Therefore, you really don’t need to bother playing detective.
Step 3. Divorce all Emotions From the Situation
This is all business. Someone came to you for your honest opinion and you’re going to give it. That person on the other end of the table is merely a customer. They don’t want to connect with you. Don’t bother with empathy or compassion. Be sure to be painfully blunt.
Step 4. Don’t Think. Act Quickly.
The worst thing you can do is deliberately and prayerfully consider a response. You need to trust your gut and go with your immediate reaction to the situation. Swiftly and decisively judge this person’s situation and say whatever comes to mind first.
Step 5. Never Speak to This Person Again.
After you have skillfully dispensed your wisdom and advice, be sure to part ways with this person permanently. You are by no means obligated to keep in touch. The last thing they would want is for you to follow up and check in on their situation.
Is This You?
You may not be that bad at giving advice, but odds are that you’ve fallen in with at least one of these mis-steps before. If you have, then you’ll certainly benefit from tomorrow’s post. Subscribe today (for free of course) and it’ll come straight to your inbox.
Join the conversation: In what other ways have you seen people give really bad advice? In essence, what would you add to this list? Click here to respond.