Asking Advice Makes a Good Impression


There is one thing most people know to avoid for sure: asking for advice.

There is an additional side benefit: asking for advice allows us to make a surprisingly positive impression on our mentors.

Participants who were asked for advice reported that they would be more likely to ask their partner for advice on a similar task in the future.

As we found in follow-up studies, a request for advice flatters the advisor and increases her self-confidence, which in turn boosts her positive perceptions of the advice seeker.

The self-identified non-experts were perplexed by these advice requests and viewed the advice seeker as less competent for asking for their help.

In a final study, even asking for advice on a very easy task-though it did not increase judgments of competence-did not harm evaluations either.