10 Words of Advice for Advice Givers

The number one complaint of advice givers is people don’t listen.

If you enjoy giving advice, chill out.

You might be qualified to give advice if you’re reluctant to give it.

defensiveness is explaining why things should stay the same

I’ve never met a great advice giver.

10 words of advice for advice givers:

  1. Connect with their goals. Never share a single word of advice until you’re completely clear on their goals.
    1. Who do they aspire to be? Aspiration – theirs, not yours – shapes advice.
    2. What are they trying to accomplish?
    3. Say things they need to hear, not what you need to say.
    4. The goal of advice is helping people become their best, not your best.
  2. Monitor your emotion.
    1. Frustration suggests a desire to control. People don’t enjoy feeling controlled.
    2. Relax and breathe.
    3. Slow the rate of your speech.
    4. Lower the volume of your voice.
  3. Focus on what frustrates them, not you. Poor advice givers are motivated by their own agenda.
  4. Watch for defensiveness. When people become defensive they’re explaining why things should stay the same. Conversations become adversarial. Defensiveness is resistance.
  5. Share what works more than what’s wrong.
  6. Honor their choice. People enjoy making choices and resist being told what to do.
  7. Make it plural. Suggest option(s) that they might choose. (See #6.)
  8. Wait to be asked. Unrequested advice feels like criticism. A distant second to waiting to be asked is asking permission. “Do you mind if I offer a suggestion?”
  9. Affirm effective behaviors. “When you …, it moves you toward your goal. If you tried …, it might take you even further.”
  10. Don’t attach to specific outcomes.

Warning: “Let me give you some advice,” is often another way of complaining.

The advice we love is the advice we request, even that is iffy.

What advice do you have for giving advice?

What are great advice givers like?