The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten on Smash Notes

The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten podcast.

December 31, 2019

Unfiltered insights and actionable advice straight from the trenches of startup and business life. The show hosts, Steli Efti and Hiten Shah, are both serial entrepreneurs who have founded multi-million dollar SaaS startups. Being busy CEOs of fast-growing companies, they know the value of your time and make sure you get the most out of each 22 minute episode. Tune in for new episodes every Tuesday and Friday.

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Today on The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about mistakes people make when they ask for advice.

Asking for advice can be a tricky thing. Often times, when asking someone is struggling with something, that person might not know exactly how to ask for it. Other times, that person might not be seeking new ideas but is rather looking for validation or an affirmation of a choice they’ve already made.

In today’s episode of the show, Steli and Hiten talk about some common mistakes people make when they ask for advice, how to ask people the right questions, why you shouldn’t give unsolicited advice and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic

00:33 Why this topic was chosen.

01:43 The first mistake people make when asking for advice.

01:56 The second mistake people make when asking for advice.

03:48 Why you should always take negative advice gracefully.

05:16 Why observations from other people are really valuable.

06:14 How to ask people the right questions.

07:02 The importance of meditating on a piece of advice before acting on it.

07:43 Why you shouldn’t give unsolicited advice.

3 Key Points:

The first mistake you can make is not knowing that you should ask for advice.When you’re struggling with something, it’s really important to ask for help.Observations from other people are really valuable.


Steli Efti: Hey everybody. This is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah and today on The Start Up Chat we're going to talk about mistakes when asking for advice and we're just going to do a relatively quick episode going back and forth. I think the first mistake I'm going to share is probably not obvious and that mistake is not knowing that you should ask for advice in the first place. Right? So we're assuming people are asking for advice. I think one that I'm bad at and you might be too I don't know, but I think we've talked about this in the past is that you just don't ask. I think it goes beyond just work or business. It's a life thing where like if you're dealing with something, there are people that will just talk to you. You know and go talk to them and ask. When you're struggling or suffering, even worse, it's really important to do that. It might even be people you don't even know that well. It doesn't really matter. It's not a humility, it's like the opposite of humility but there's like a vulnerability that we might not be willing to go to certain people or anybody when we have a problem. I would just say if you have a problem and you don't know anyone else to call, call the A team. I'm going to leave it at that 'cause I think that sums up one of them for me.


Steli Efti: All right, I love that. Yeah I didn't see that coming. I already was in that mind frame of people have already asked for advice so I love that. Two things that come to my mind instantly, one is making sure that when you ask for advice you ask from a place of curiosity instead of from a place of trying to confirm that your idea, your opinion is right. Not that it's bad if somebody confirms that the direction you are going towards is one they think as well is the right direction to take, but I always find that people make that mistake where sometimes they come into a conversation, they are seeking advice, but what they really seek is confirmation. All that we really want to hear is that they're right and what they're doing is correct. They're not there to truly here what this other person or this group of people has to say. So that closes you up to all the value you might be able to receive if you're totally open minded in that conversation so make sure when you ask for advice, you truly want to hear everything the other party has to say, even and especially if it contradicts what you think the right thing to do would be here, or the tendency,

Key points in this episode

In this episode

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