Say No With Grace

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One of the primary problems with any aggressive project is that opportunities to fail are everywhere — but they are hidden. We see so many exciting things: new things to learn; new projects that come with revenue; new features that would make our product or service “better”; and so many more.

If we say yes to all of these “opportunities” we’ll end up dead. Simple as that.

The successful startups out there almost always do one thing — and they do it very well. They also started simple and added complexity later.

They also say NO to many things. They know what they MUST do and what they MUST NOT do.

That’s a hard line to pick — and it is even harder to do. Saying No is hard — we’re wired to say Yes.

Most of us don’t even know what to do when someone tells us “no”. Femgineer covers this off pretty nicely here.

Sometimes No just means No. But engineers are usually brutal at saying it. We don’t say no with grace. We just say “no” — leaving the recipient semi-destroyed and thinking that we’re assholes. Not good.

So get past it.

Learn to Say No With Grace

Saying No doesn’t have to be a brutal experience. Saying no with grace can actually make things better than they ever were.

Be gentle, but firm and quick and if you can, give a reason why. Here are a couple of examples:

Is No a No?

No can mean so many things:

Saying No With Grace

When possible:

NOTE: This post is going to be edited regularly as I refine the approach.

Originally published at Continuum Loop Inc..

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