This is perhaps the most powerful question we can ask in business, Lets take a look at why.
Starting with the HOW, in the HOW can I help you? We are looking for specifics, details, instructions on what we can do to be of service, to assist someone in their cause. We want clarity on exactly how someone would like us to be of help to them, no guessing, no missing the mark – we want to know.
Next comes CAN, in the How CAN I help you? We want to put ourselves in a position where we are able to extend ourselves, where we are in the position to lend a hand, we want to know the circumstances that are a natural for extending ourselves to others.
I, In the How can I help you? This is about me, all about me, being in the right circumstance, in the right frame of mind, in a position of power that allows me to extend myself on your behalf and make a recommendation, provide some insight, make a connection. It’s about me taking action.
HELP, in the how can I HELP you. We are looking for ways to lend a hand, we want to play a supporting role, to be truly helpful to you in moving your business forward. Offering help is about making it easier for someone else, providing assistance.
And finally YOU, how can I help YOU? When we make this offer, when we ask this question, we are solely focused on the other person and what would benefit them. The focus on you is about giving without expectation of receiving, or as we often refer to it as givers gain.
Your challenge: the next time you are working with a power partner, dancing with a fellow BNI member, or working with a client – ask the powerful question How can I help you? And then sit back and listen carefully to the answer.