Over the holiday break, I enjoyed spending time with my 18-month old grandson. He is at that stage where the word “no” is a significant part of his vocabulary. He says it often and sometimes loudly.
As we grow older we tend to say “no” less often. I don’t know if it is because of our upbringing or if we are just trying to keep everyone pleased, but saying no feels like something we just shouldn’t do. It seems to be a word to be saved for only the most dire emergencies.
As a business owner, you need to break that mold. Saying no should be one of the management tools you carry and use on a regular basis. This was recently pointed out in an article shared by Becky McCray on her blog, Small Biz Survival. This blog post was building on an earlier work by Stephanie Ward of Firefly Coaching.
Stephanie several reasons why we just can’t say no: we want to be liked; we feel guilty; or we don’t know how to say it in a way that makes it an acceptable response. So instead we say yes and quickly become angry or feel overwhelmed.
There are other times we need to say no as a business owner. One such time may be when you are being asked over and over for donations. Suzette Barta of Oklahoma has put together an excellent piece on “How to Survive When You’re Being Hundred-Dollared to Death” (look for CR-961).
Here are more helpful articles:
- This is How Successful People say No – Business Insider
- 7 Business Reasons to Say No – Inc.
- 3 Reasons Why You Should Say No to More Business – American Express
- Learning to Say “No” is Part of Success – Harvard Business Review
- Say No Without Burning Bridges – Harvard Business Review
No – It is one of the shortest words we have. Yet it carries so much weight. We fear that using it will shut doors forever.
The reality is it can be used effectively and without any harm to your business. As we move into a new year, make it part of your business management strategy.