How to Answer a Question when You Don’t Know the Answer

At some point during your work week, someone is going to ask you for information you don’t have. There are some people (I don’t happen to be one of them) who hate to say “I don’t know.” For some reason, it makes them feel stupid, or out of touch. I never worry about that. I know lots of things, so missing an answer at any given time doesn’t make me feel dumb. In fact, it’s why I almost never use “I don’t know” by itself; I think of it as an incomplete sentence. “I don’t know, but I’ll find out” is my idea of a complete sentence.

Asking for Help

Jodi Glickman is the author of “Great on the Job: What to Say, How to Say it” and she offers readers a step by step guide to success by saying the right things. Glickman offers scripts for getting things done at work, asking for help and managing priorities. They’re good scripts; as a manager, I can vouch for her expertise in guiding workers toward more successful outcomes. Here’s her formula for success when you have to ask for help.