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Finding a good workplace adviser is just one ingredient in the fine art of taking advice. Once you’ve decided that you could benefit from wise counsel — and even if you’ve already identified the person you want — you’ll still need to follow a set of principles.
The following three principles seem like common sense, but people neglect them surprisingly often when engaging an adviser:
Have your adviser well in place —deep in conversation and action — before a crisis hits. Build a solid foundation so it’ll be there when you need it.
Allow your adviser access to you — to both your schedule and your thinking — so that it’s absolutely clear what you’re facing.
Remember that the adviser is not there to do your job. You’ve got to make your own decisions, set your own benchmarks, dream your own dreams.
—Adapted from Taking Advice: How Leaders Get Good Counsel and Use It Wisely, Dan Ciampa, Harvard Business School Press.
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