4 Scenarios that You Should Say

May 8th, 2017

4 Scenarios that You Should Say "No" to at Work

There’s something scary about the word, “No”. For example, take the time your boss asked you to do a task that is part of someone else’s job description because, as he put it, “I trust you to get it done.” Or the time your co-worker asked you to help them with an assignment on a really short deadline, while you had several other tasks to accomplish before your own deadline. In both of those situations, a polite “no” may have seemed impossible, but it is actually healthy and necessary to say no sometimes. So, here are 4 Scenarios that You Should Say No to at Work.

1. Assignments that Interfere with Your ability to Fulfill your Job Requirements

Your number one priority at work is to fulfill your job requirements, as outlined by your contract or job description. When you say yes to too many other tasks, you’re likely taking time away from work that you’re obligated to accomplish.Learn to say “not now” or “no” to these kind of tasks until you have accomplished what you need to get done.

2. Consistently being asked to help a co-worker with the same thing

Sometimes, people become so accustomed to coming to you for a particular problem that they stop trying to solve it on their own. When you say no to this task, you give them the opportunity to grow by coming up with a solution on their own.

3. You don't have enough time to work in your "sweet spot"

Your Sweet Spot is the part of your job that you enjoy doing. Saying “no” to other tasks allows you to spend time doing the assignments that caused you to fall in love (or at least like) with your job in the first place.

4. Your schedule is stretched thin and/or you are burned out

This one’s self-explanatory and you know when you’re there.


Knowing when to say no at work is important because it allows you to set priorities that will benefit the company and it also helps you better manage your time. This is especially crucial if you’re in a management position. I’m sure you’ve run into situations that are not on this list that have required a “no”. What are they? Comment below with a time you should have or did say no.

Gloria Dubose

Gloria is now the Projects & Marketing Manager at The Bethlehem Center. 
She started at the Beth as an unpaid intern and she's been here ever since doing everything from administration to event planning and social media.
She's a proud Moc (UTC alumni) passionate about learning everything Latin (including Spanish).
To connect with Gloria email [email protected]

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