Ambition is a commendable attribute, but there are times when your drive and energy can wind up being counter-productive – and actually damaging your career. We are each capable of only so much work each day, and taking on too much can lead to missed deadlines, impaired quality, and burnout. Not achievements that you want taken into consideration next time you’re up for a promotion! It’s difficult to tell your boss ‘no’ when they try to add to your workload, but ultimately you can win their respect by establishing the standards to which you aspire for yourself and the business.
But how to actually go about saying ‘no’ without seeming rude or lazy? Honesty is key. Your boss will note your maturity and cool-headedness if you are able to explain calmly the benefits of delegating a task to someone else. Make sure to meet them in person (rather than sending an email) to state your case: that way, there can be no misunderstanding over the tone of your voice! Remember they’re the boss: you should thank them for the work and apologize for declining it, even as you make it clear to them that this is best for both of you. If your schedule is packed, arrange a meeting with your boss to look at your workload and priorities in more depth. It’s a great way to show how serious you are about the job.
This new infographic sets out in straightforward terms an action plan for turning down work. It’s worth getting to know and understand the best way to do so, before you do something drastic! Taking responsibility for your workload shows ambition and potential, but it needs to be done right if you’re not to give your boss the wrong impression. Next time you’re swamped with tasks, give it a go – and see how your position at work can be strengthened.