Dennis McCurdy's Find A Way
Get What You Want, Get What You Deserve.

Ask And You Shall Receive

Years ago when I was just starting out in business, a very smart man said to me, "Dennis, I think at this stage of the game you should know more than you do about Fire Insurance. So, I will help you. You impress me because you have a huge advantage: you aren't afraid to ask questions. You know where to look and you put yourself out there, even if you feel uncomfortable. And that's how you learn. You find out who has the answers and then you ask them."

Over the years I have heard the same comment from others. "You ask questions and you aren't afraid that someone may think you don't know something."

My philosophy is: How will you learn what you need to know if you don't ask questions? What is there to be afraid of? You'll only ever not know something one time. Once you have the information, write it down, keep it on file, and store the knowledge in your memory bank.

Children ask questions all the time. "Why is this? Why did you do that? Why? Why? Why?" Sometimes it seems like they are a "Why?" machine. Children start out knowing nothing and by the time they are teenagers they know everything. (Just ask a teenage.)

Two days ago I had a business question about something I did not have a lot of experience with. You see, even after 35 years in business, I still haven't been exposed to everything in my industry. So what did I do? I asked. I called an acquaintance who owned a business similar to mine, but one who is not a direct competitor. Steve was someone I'd met briefly two years ago.

After jogging his memory about when and where we'd met, I asked if he was knowledgeable about the topic of my concern. Steve said he was. Being respectful of another's time, I asked if this was a good time for us to talk. He said it wasn't a good time, but could I call him back on Monday just after 5:00 PM when his office was closed. He gave me his extension and his cell phone number just in case he wasn't at his desk.

What will I do? I will call promptly at 5:00 PM on Monday. I will have a list of questions so I don't waste his time. I will listen and write as fast as I can. And I will reciprocate, if I can. I will also send a handwritten thank you note.

So what's the moral of this story? I asked and I will receive. I will receive some good information from a person with excellent experience.

What's the worst that could have happened? He could have said no. So what would I have done? I would have said to myself... Next, which means find a different person to ask. And I would keep asking until I got the answers.

Ask, ask, ask!