“No” can be an annoying word to hear. But saying no to your boss can be especially annoying for them. They need something done, need your help, and their request is being declined.
However, there are ways to make your declination more palatable and let management know that you are a loyal, supportive employee.
You always want to make a positive impression with coworkers and management, but we are all human and there are only so many hours in a day. There are times when taking on a new project is simply impossible.
Some situations when saying no to your boss might be best are:
There may also be circumstances in which you are asked to do something immoral, unethical, or illegal. We don’t like to think these issues are typical, but research shows that one in four U.S. employees are requested to act unethically. Of course, saying no is a preferable response but, unfortunately, easier said than done.
Declining a request or assignment doesn’t have to be a direct “No” so much as a conversation in which the outcome is “No.” You might begin the conversation by re-stating what you think the request is and adding your perception of the request. This starts things off with clear understanding.
Next, communicate your reasons for declining:
Wrap it up with a “No”:
Professionalism is always important and especially important when saying no to your boss. You not only need to audibly communicate effectively, but you also need to consider your demeanor.
Being a boss is always challenging. One way to ease the challenge is to have faithful and honest employees. Even when saying no, you can prove that you exemplify the ideal employee.