It never does any harm to ask for what you want
During a Q&A at Vanderbilt University in 2013, lifelong Billy Joel fan and piano player Michael Pollack plucked up the courage and stood up to ask his childhood idol a question.
Pollack, an 18-year-old freshman at Vanderbilt, asked to accompany Joel in a performance of “New York State of Mind,” Pollack’s favorite song: “I was very fortunate to play with Richie Cannata [Joel’s saxophone player] many times in New York City, and I was wondering if I could play it with you.”
With just a hint of hesitation, Joel said, “Okay.”
Joel gave a remarkable vocal performance to accompany Pollack’s piano skills. The crowd applauded.
“Remember that name,” Joel told the excited audience. “Guy’s got chops.”
An online video of the performance quickly went viral.
Stop Overthinking Every Simple (and Not so Simple) Request
Pollack took a risk and traded the possibility of embarrassment and rejection for a lifetime of memories and a huge payoff.
Before long, Pollack signed publishing deals and began collaborating with other musicians. After graduating from Vanderbilt, he wrote dozens of songs for celebrity musicians. This year, he achieved his first U.S. Top 40 radio #1 with Maroon 5’s “Memories.”
Idea for Impact: All it Takes is a Simple Ask
Most folks know that the key to getting what they want is merely asking for it. But they’re too wimpish to speak up.
Take a chance. A little bit of courage can open doors for you. Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Ask for what you want. You sometimes won’t get it, and often the rejection will be painful. But when this works, it works surprisingly well.
Try something today that has a small risk and a huge payoff.
Leave a Reply