The Importance of Asking for What You Want

Throughout my short career I have been blessed with being put on big projects which would be contrary to the time I’ve been with the company. I’ve been thinking about the reason for this and it has boiled down to the fact that I ask to be given larger responsibilities and I have specifically asked to be put on certain projects. We had just been awarded a very large project that I was on the team for and I wanted to be part of the construction of the building. It was easy asking for larger responsibilities at my internships because I was temporary but as a permanent employee I had to think about longevity and company politics.

I asked a project executive at my current company about how I should state my desire to be on a new project that we had just been awarded. He gave me this piece of advice “In our company the best way to get what you want to is to tell the right people, and tell them often.” As soon as he gave me this piece of advice, I responded to the operations manager debrief email about our project award. This is what I typed “I’m very excited to hear the news and I feel extremely honored to be part of the process to win this project (I helped put together the drywall package – sorry I can’t state how much it was). I would love the opportunity to be part of the construction for (project) and hopefully my performance during the bidding process has showed what I can bring to the (project) team. I would love to discuss this opportunity with you on the deck today and look forward to speaking with you soon.”

I’m a man of my words, so at the bid party on our company’s deck/patio I came up to him and we made small talk for a few minutes. The conversation started about my current projects and then I asked about the award process for the project and afterwards introduced the subject of my email. I told him about my fear of asking him because I thought he would be bombarded by requests from everyone asking to be included. He told me I would be surprised at how uncommon it is for someone to ask that they want certain things. He then proceeded to tell me that it is a very good thing that I told him I wanted to be on this project. Then he tells me that the project executive that I asked for advice called him today and told him to put me on this project!

I made my intentions very clear that I want to be on this project and he told me that he would do his best to see that I get on but there are also a tremendous amount of variables that go into putting certain people on these big projects. I have done all I can to state my desire to be on the project and I have told the right person because the operations manager is the person who staffs all of our jobs; I will just have to wait and see if I will be given the opportunity. FINGERS CROSSED!!