How comfortable are you asking others for help when you’re struggling with work tasks?

SmartPulse -- our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership -- tracks feedback from over 240,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our newsletter.

How comfortable are you asking others for help when you’re struggling with work tasks?

  • Very. I ask for help anytime I need it: 27%
  • Mostly. I’ll ask for help when I’m really stuck: 41%
  • Somewhat. I’ll only ask for help in tough situations: 19%
  • Not very. I have a hard time asking for help: 8%
  • Not at all. I rarely ask others for help: 3%

Don’t wait until it’s too late. It’s great to see a large portion of you (68%) willing to ask for help when needed. For those who have trouble requesting assistance, remember it’s easier to fix a small problem sooner than a big problem later. Things can get out of control fast. You have colleagues for a reason. Taking on too much can also affect your stress levels, performance and even your health. You don’t have to ask for help all the time and there is a balance of not being overly reliant on others. That said, doing everything by yourself is stressful, risky and lonely. As long as you’re being reasonable with your requests in terms of size and frequency, you’ll find the vast majority of coworkers or friends are more than willing to pitch in when asked.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS. Before launching his own company, he worked at McKinsey & Co., Capital One and Scotts Miracle-Gro. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He's the author of three leadership books: "One Piece of Paper," "Lead Inside the Box" and "The Elegant Pitch."