Do You Know What You’re Asking For?

Or, “What are you asking for?” Now, those of you that know me well may have read that last question with a New Yawk accent, and a slightly obnoxious attitude. Like, “Whaddya askin’ for?” And expecting it to be followed closely by, “Who wants to know?” You would be wrong.

I simply mean to get you to think about exactly what you are asking for. Especially when you’re asking for money.

Pile of dollar bills

There are lots of words for money. Here in the US, we sometimes call it “moolah”, “Benjamins”, “bucks”, and “greenbacks”. We also know that when we hear those words, the speaker is referring to a pile of paper legal tender. Too often, we are way less clear when we are actually asking for some of the stuff.

We ask for “support”. We ask for “resources”. We ask for “assistance”. If we’re being slightly less nebulous, we ask for “funding”. Or we ask for “investment”. When was the last time you actually used the word “money” when you were asking for money?

Much of this obliqueness (is that even a word?) comes from our fears and discomfort around money. We’re not supposed to talk about money. We’re not supposed to ask other people about their money. We’re not supposed to volunteer how much money we make or have in our bank accounts. Why do we have these fears? Too many hypotheses to put into this post. Suffice it to say that most of us have some fear or discomfort around talking about money.

Well, here’s a new hypothesis for you. How about asking for exactly what you want?

I just heard all of you gasp.

What, you don’t want to ask that investor to actually write a check? You don’t want to tell the potential donor you need her to give you money? You’re uncomfortable asking a client to pay you dollars commensurate with the value you provide?

Pile of old computers

How do you feel when you ask for MONEY and you get stuff like this?

Look at the flip side. Should you be frustrated when the investor wants to trade stock in her company for stock in yours? Would you happy if the potential donor gave you her nasty old office furniture instead of cash? Does your work suffer if you’re secretly thinking, “they aren’t paying me enough”?

Be clear about what you want. It makes it much easier for people to give it to you.

If you’re still uncomfortable using words like money, cash, dollars, income, revenue and profit, you might want to check out my special report: 10 Biggest Fears Professional Women Have Around Asking for Money…and How to Conquer Them! You can get it by filling out the form on the right.

Or, get yourself the  How to Ask for Money Quickstart Program. Three powerful tools to help you overcome your fears, embrace your leadership qualities and ask for—and get—the money you deserve.

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1 Comment

  1. Spoken like a true New Yorker… some good points here Barbara!

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