Everybody has an agenda.
Even if we say we don’t, that’s still an agenda.
But there’s no reason to feel guilty about that. If we want something, there’s no shame in making some noise, letting whoever has it know that we want it, and respectfully reminding them why we deserve it.
When we start our phone calls or emails with, “Everybody has an agenda, and here’s mine,” we still lay a foundation of respect, establish expectational clarity and frame the conversation with candor and transparency. To do otherwise is to do a disservice.
What’s more, because so few people are willing to lay their motivations bare, the unexpectedness of this approach makes the encounter more memorable, and often times, more successful.