Stellar entrepreneurship depends upon firmly saying “no” at the right times. Here are the occasions when you absolutely must say no, in order to preserve your sanity and further your business success.

When No is Necessary 

Saying no is an essential entrepreneurial skill. Stand your ground and confidently say no, in order to:

  • Accomplish your priorities on schedule. Non-priority tasks are simply distractions, which can cost you, or even put your entire project at risk.
  • Maintain your health (both physical and mental). If agreeing could harm your wellbeing, you must say no. If your health suffers, so will your business.
  • Maintain a healthy work-and-life balance. Overall harmony and balance are required for your physical and emotional health, so say no to anything that compromises your important personal relationships and your non-work life. Remember, work is not everything, and it cannot be the only thing, in a full, rewarding life. Keep your work to life ration under control.
  • Uphold your ethics. Never do anything illegal or contrary to your values.
  • Leverage automation. Suggest (or use) a reliable automated solution, if asked to perform tasks that aren’t a good use of your skills and your time.
  • Keep eyes on the prize. Off-topic tasks keep you from completing priorities and realizing your business goals.
  • Preserve your business relationship. Honestly admit defeat when necessary and you’ll gain respect. Saying no, when you cannot comply, shows integrity and helps protect your business’ future. Saying no enhances your reputation in this case, because it’s much better than disappointing others by taking on something you’ll never accomplish on time (or something you’ll do poorly). By being honest, you are showing respect for the requestor, telling them you are not the right person for the task (ever, or just at this moment).

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