Don’t be ashamed of needing help. You have a duty to fulfill just like a soldier on the wall of battle. So what if you’re injured and can’t climb up without another soldier’s help?Marcus Aurelius, “Meditations”
It’s comforting to know that humanity’s angst about asking for help has been around at least for the 1,900 years or so since Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius wrote those words.
It’s unlikely that many of us will be injured in battle and require assistance to climb a fortress. The analogy was appropriate for Marcus, who spent much of his reign defending the Roman Empire’s northern borders. But we all have our own challenges, don’t we? And sometimes we’re not entirely able (either because of injury or being unprepared) to overcome them.
That’s when, as Marcus wrote to himself, it’s appropriate to ask for help. Of course, the thought of asking someone to help me used to make my mouth go dry. I mean, if the boss asks you to handle something, doesn’t he or she assume that you know how to do it? Won’t you embarrass yourself by revealing you’re not as competent as the boss thinks?
Why else might you not ask for help? Maybe you think asking will inconvenience someone. Maybe the person you ask will say “no.”
The Helper’s Point of View
These are common fears, but turn it around. A competent boss wants you to succeed and will try to get you the help you need. And how do you react if somebody asks you for some help? Unless you’re a terrible human (nobody in this group of readers), you’re happy to oblige, and you’ll even feel good afterward.
What the heck does this have to do with online marketing for small businesses? Odds are if you’re just starting out or are a small shop, you are squeezing time for marketing between all your other responsibilities.
Are you feeling some peer pressure to do it yourself? Even if all the other small business owners you know are doing their social media and online ads themselves, that doesn’t mean they’re doing it well.
I’m trying to think of a way to say this without sounding self-serving (probably impossible), but unless your small business has a full-time marketing person, you’re not doing it as well as you could be. You should ask for help.
If marketing is important to your business (it is), then you owe it to yourself and your business to do it well, even if it means getting help. Just like Marcus Aurelius’ injured soldier, it’s your duty to get up that wall.