I’ve had a bad habit over the years that my team has rightfully called me out on, and it’s one that I’m trying to break. I’ll find an interesting article and send it to one of them and simply ask them “thoughts?”. That’s not helpful.
Richard Millington recently had a great post where he unpacked the similar phrase of “what do you think?”. When someone is asked that, Richard says:
If you’re cornered, you might give a quick reply and then try to move on. The approach just feels a little weird.
The obvious catch with an online community is people aren’t cornered. If the approach is off and there’s no real benefit of replying, people don’t reply.
The solution is to set more specific intentions with your request. Ask if the budget allows for what the article suggests. Ask if they’ve tried that app before. Ask them to review the article to discuss at a future meeting. Be clear on your intentions.
At our Meetup next month (it’s free and virtual – join us!), we’ll be digging into managing follow-up. While much of the discussion will be about us following up with others, the flip side of that is creating situations that lead to better follow-up from others. Asking “thoughts?” will keep an email lingering in an inbox, while more clear tasks will be taken care of. Clarity in your requests will likely yield better results.
What do you think?