Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help

Front Cover
Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Feb 7, 2011 - Business & Economics - 187 pages
Strategy+Business Best Leadership Book of the Year: An “uncommonly wise” analysis of the psychological and social dynamics of helping relationships (Warren Bennis, author of On Becoming a Leader).
Helping is a fundamental human activity, but it can also be a frustrating one. All too often, to our bewilderment, our sincere offers of help are resented, resisted, or refused—and we often react the same way when people try to help us. Why is it so difficult to provide or accept help? How can we make the whole process easier? 
Many words are used for helping: assisting, aiding, advising, caregiving, coaching, consulting, counseling, guiding, mentoring, supporting, teaching, and more. In this seminal book on the topic, corporate culture and organizational development guru Ed Schein analyzes the social and psychological dynamics common to all types of helping relationships, explains why help is often not helpful, and shows what any would-be helpers must do to ensure that their assistance is both welcomed and genuinely useful. He shows how to navigate the delicate acts of asking for or offering help; avoid pitfalls; mitigate power imbalances; and establish a solid foundation of trust—and how these techniques can be applied to teamwork and organizational leadership.
From the bestselling author of Organizational Culture and Leadership, and illustrated with examples from many types of relationships—husbands and wives, doctors and patients, consultants and clients—Helping is a concise, definitive analysis of what it takes to establish successful, mutually satisfying helping relationships.


The Essence of Relationships
The Inequalities and Ambiguities of the Helping Relationship
Three Kinds of Helping Roles
The Key to Building and Maintaining
Applying the Inquiry Process
Teamwork as Perpetual Reciprocal Helping
Helping Leaders and Organizational Clients

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2011)

Edgar H. Schein is Sloan Fellows Professor Emeritus of Management at the Sloan School. He is one of the founders of the field of organization development and the concept of process consultation. He has authored numerous books, including Organizational Psychology and The Corporate Culture Survival Guide.

Bibliographic information