Our time is our most valuable resource, especially at work. That’s why it’s so important to keep your day on track and not fill it with things that aren’t going to benefit your career in the long run. Learning how to say ‘no’ is the first rule of business and then to learn three types of “no”! But it gets complicated in the work situation because there’s always that worry about whether or not you’re burning bridges or letting down someone who might be important later for career advancement.
The truth is, in most of these situations, that worry is all for nothing. Most people expect a ‘no’ when asking, and don’t tend to think much of it. And honestly? Giving an insincere answer – like saying yes to something you have no intention of following through on – is only going to hurt you in the long run. Not to mention you’re hurting the person doing the asking, who might have gone on to ask someone else who might have been more on board with their ideas.
So how do you say ‘no’ in the way that will serve your career the best? The trick is to learn the three different kinds of ‘no’ and how to use them.
1. The Hard No
Use this ‘no’ when you know you want no part in what they are asking, and when you’re positive that saying ‘no’ isn’t going to have a long-lasting negative impact on your job. A hard no is just that – a ‘no’ without room for argument.
2. The Soft No
Use this when you are on the fence about whether to say ‘no’ or ‘yes.’ That is a ‘no until I get more information about what’s required.’ Does this mean this ‘no’ has to turn into ‘yes’? Not necessarily. What’s nice about it, is it lets the person doing the asking know precisely where you are, and why.
3. Ask me Later
This is exactly what it sounds like – a ‘no’ because the timing isn’t right. Sometimes we’re asked to do things we really would like to say ‘yes’ to – but can’t because of another deadline or project. In this case, stick with honesty. You can’t right now, but you are interested in the offer if it’s open later. While some requests come with deadlines, sometimes timelines can be rearranged, so you don’t necessarily have to miss out on an opportunity.
By using the right ‘no’ at the right time, you put yourself in a position to keep your career on track without succumbing to the trap of overwork and being overwhelmed. Not only that, you’ll find yourself more contented, and more productive. Put like that; a ‘no’ becomes an easy thing to say after all.
About Tirglas | Self Help | Personal Development |
Tirglas offers high-quality personal development eBooks, video, audios, inspiring self-help training programmes and other digital products. The best time to start a self-help personal development programme was probably some time ago. The next best time is right now!
The Kaizen approach to self- improvement is a lifelong journey. It requires a mindset of self-analysis, recognition and acknowledgement of bad habits, a desire for personal growth. Also and most importantly, it requires action in a positive direction. So why not start today by doing what is necessary and then move to do what is possible. Your own success story starts now, begin your journey of personal development.