Asking for advice

Why is asking for advice more effective than asking for feedback? As it turns out, feedback is often associated with evaluation. At school, we receive feedback with letter grades. When we enter the workforce, we receive feedback with our performance evaluations. Because of this link between feedback and evaluation, when people are asked to provide feedback, they often focus on judging others’ performance; they think more about how others performed in the past. This makes it harder to imagine someone’s future and possibly better performance. As a result, feedback givers end up providing less critical and actionable input.

In contrast, when asked to provide advice, people focus less on evaluation and more on possible future actions. Whereas the past is unchangeable, the future is full of possibilities. So, if you ask someone for advice, they will be more likely to think forward to future opportunities to improve rather than backwards to the things you have done, which you can no longer change.
— (Jaewon Yoon, Hayley Blunden, Ariella Kristal, Ashley Whillans - Harvard Business Review)

Below is a script for asking an acquaintance for help/advice regarding new opportunities - hopefully you find it helpful. Obviously, you’ll need to tailor it to your situation by changing the words in CAPITALS first. You might even put your own style on it, but it’s a start.

"Hi {YOUR NAME}, I haven't seen/spoke to you since XYZ. I hope you're well...

To cut straight to the chase, I was wondering if I could ask you a massive favour. I'm looking for a new job a the moment after leaving the world of ABC behind me, and it's all a bit scary. So I was wondering if you have any advice for me on how to change jobs or find new opportunities? I'm open to any and all suggestions.

Basically, I'm looking for roles in {AREA, AREA or AREA} - that sort of thing. And I've completed a {COURSE TITLE} course recently.

I totally understand if you're swamped at work at the moment, but if you knew anyone who you think I should talk to or any roles coming up, I'd really appreciate if you could let me know. Of course, I'd look forward to returning the favour if/when the time comes!"

CAREERRonan Kennedyscript