Saying NO: Steve Jobs style

  • When a request comes to you in person, pause and count to three before delivering your decision.
  • Explain that you are focused on other things right now but would love to get together when you can.
  • Request that you will check your calendar and get back to them. This will give you time to pause and assess your priorities.
  • Use Vacation responders even on days when you are at work, letting the emailers know that you are busy for a few hours doing focussed work.
  • Let your bosses know that doing the assigned task will mean less priority to the other tasks.
  • Clarify exactly what you are willing to do and what you aren't willing.
  • Suggest Someone else who might help the person in a better way.

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