I was discussing with some friends and colleagues the other day their need to have more feedback in their own careers and workplace. The subject came up of asking people in their particular organization's leadership for guidance. I stated that I always felt like I work best when I ask for what I need. Whether that need is for guidance, feedback, support, permission, or just plain old perspective, I try not to overthink that process of asking. It's easy to think you will bother people or, worse, come off as a complainer or non team player. I suggested to my friends that asking for what we need, in a diplomatic, solution oriented way, is the best indicator to me of someone who is both confident and truly interested in improving and contributing to an organization.
If you work in a place where you can't ask those questions (or study with a teacher that won't tolerate them, or a spouse that won't support them!), then that's a dead giveaway that communication and leadership is severely lacking. The boat is sinking, it's only a matter of how fast it hits bottom!