Lara Nieberding

The Purple Lara

Unsolicited Advice…

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Who recommended: Lynne Waymon

What I am reading: Make Your Contacts Count (Networking Know-How For Business and Career Success) by Anne Baber and Lynne Waymon

Where in the book: page 81

Why I am reading: Learning how to network. Cause believe me, I have no CLUE!

Which quote: “Avoid the Top Twenty Turn-Offs: Don’t give unsolicited advice.”

How this quote adjusted my thinking:

This piece of advice is tricky. I think there is a lot more judgment call on giving unsolicited advice.  When I hear someone describe a situation, sometimes the person is so focused on the “heat” of what is going on, they might not recognize a solution.  The person might not think to say, “What is your advice?”  Their frame of mind is not there.

I have been in situations where I say, “Would you like to hear what I did when that happened to me?”  Perhaps I am too sensitive, but there is this awkward moment when the conversation stops…the person hesitates and then politely agrees to listen.  It is at that moment that I am not really sure they want to hear what I have to say.  It feels like I am giving unsolicited advice. I leave feeling uncomfortable.

I have also been in situations where I say, “Would you like to hear what I did when that happened to me?”  The person boldly says, “NO!” and charges the conversation along.  At least they indicated they weren’t really looking for social interaction.  I leave feeling disrespected.

When it comes to unsolicited advice, you have to have a keen sense judgment for the situation.  Some instances it may be appropriate, if delivered humbly with the intent to give without expectation and it adds value to the situation.  Some instances require one to recognize the other is just “blowing off steam” and to hold one’s tongue is the better course of action.

Written by The Purple Lara

May 19, 2008 at 9:00 AM

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