I have met several individuals who question without searching. Apparently, answers to their questions can easily be found on internet searches but they refuse to search on their own.
So I asked one of them why and he came up with a response saying, “Because it’s quicker to ask.” I had no reason to disagree.
From my opinion, I like to conduct my own search and question areas that I was unable to find answer, in order to avoid wasting time of the individual who I am questioning. But there are those who simply ask without any research.
Usually I try my best to answer. Even if I am clueless, I will do a research and answer based on my findings. I provide an answer which might be most relevant to their question.
But under circumstances when I am overloaded with work, I respond to questions by saying, “I don’t know. Further research is required to answer your question.” Then they frown with a look on their face claiming “Why are you reluctant to answer today?”
Since I respond to their questions every time, maybe I should have responded in the same manner I did before. If you disagree to the way I feel, stop reading but if you agree, please continue on.
I feel I should respond to requests. In order to respond, I will have to research and provide answers even if my hands are full. It’s probably a result of me being afraid of how people evaluate me so that’s one reason why I tend not to decline requests.
Well, it’s a great opportunity to learn more by further research but I would rather not accept additional tasks when I am busy. What is the solution here?
By accepting the request, you give the impression you are taking action to answer the question. Fact remains that you provided support.
By minimizing search time, you can allocate more time for your work. If you can find ways to obtain results in short period of time by training yourself with repeated researches, you might be able to respond to questions even quicker from next time.
It is important to determine what sort of answer will be accepted as an answer for the individual.
Researches can take forever. You can pile up information by broadening search range but can you explain every single details? Prepared information may possibly end up unneeded and this is not effective at all.
So, it is crucial to shorten your answer and check if the individual feels satisfied with your answer. If they like your short answer, you are ready to close the request.
Communication does not always go smoothly. There are cases when individuals want the answer ASAP and request for specific timeframe.
In such situation, it might be best to say “I have no answer to your question without a research.” It’s worth precisely mentioning “I cannot answer” otherwise they will seek other ways to force you for an answer.
If they manage to get you working by being persistent, they will continue to be persistent. Let them know you are impenetrable and not easily persuaded in giving away answers they want.
If you provide answers without careful research and accuracy, individuals will no longer ask you questions and speak low of you. That’s not good at all so it’s better to prepare information you think they want the most.
Individuals with questions are not dumb. They know if the answer is worthy or not. So make sure you state the given answer is the answer you think they want the most. Then they will surely understand you are trying your best to meet up to their expectations.
You may think, I will lose time for my work if I continue to accept requests.
Yes, that is true. If you think you are getting more involved in projects unrelated to your task, I think it’s worth stating, “I can support but only to a certain extent since I need to take care of my own task”
This shows you are willing to help but also you are in control to decide how much support to provide. I’m sure the others will have no reason to disagree.
After all, you have more tasks to work on. But if you wish to make yourself useful, you just have to deal with it.
I belive the key is not to deny but accept the request first and show how much output you are capable to provide.
If you say “I can’t”, there are people who try to force you in do things against your will so that’s something you want to avoid. Therefore, why not say okay and accept it. Then one day that individual may answer your question in return.