Art of refusal



In general while maintaining our decency level of behavior we develop a tendency to accept everything which even we do not like to do and forget the concept of refusing. If refusing is not kept in mind we will land up at total mess at work or even in our social relations too. lets have a look at one example:

A professional lawyer having enough level of practice never said no to any assignment coming to him. The resulting scenario of his office is:
1. The boss is always busy
2. The employees too seem to be busy but reporting and execution level quite a week
3. Professional fee billing is increasing but net bottom-line almost stagnant
4. Office environment quite stressful
5. Always staff and boss both working beyond office hours  
5. Total system almost in a mess and so on.

Social side of the same Lawyer above:

Being in profession for a long time he has developed social and personal relations with the clients well but due to his ignorance about the art of refusal the scenario of his personal life is:
1. Can not spare enough time for family.
2. Shrewd people make use of him.
3. There seems to be no planning in life as such.
4. Financial independence is good but level of satisfaction is very low.
5. Developing health hazards.
6. Total absence of fun, joy, peace and so on.    

We can visualize what can be the impact of ignoring the concept of refusal by the example. Now lets think on "How to Say No and Refuse"

First we have to develop firmness about ourselves, decide what we require and what not. What are our resources and at what cost of time, energy and monetary level we can afford to do a particular task in a given time frame. if not, We must refuse it and avoid such mess which makes our life hell. Time is precious and it is allotted to all in terms of age and that too in the limited slot then why we should neglect it. Now lets have a look at different ways to say "No"

1. Say directly No where we have no personal bindings or relationship.
2. Develop our system (office norms, policy of working etc.) to handle the refusal.
3. We can put the burden of refusal on lack of resources. I mean we can simply say no due to non availability of some resource hence we won't be able to accomplish a task or assignment.
4. Sometime task itself does not require perfection, then do only what is required. this too is a kind of  limited refusal.
5. Delegation of task at different levels, in other words creating layers makes us easy to say No. 

The lawyer knew all this well and decided to change himself. He listed all the areas where he was just taking the assignments which were not remunerated enough and could be avoided. He seriously applied the concept of refusal and what happened just see here:

1. His stress level came down considerably.
2. At the beginning his professional fee billing came down by 20% but after a few months it increased with the addition of more new good clients and his profitability (bottom line) also improved in a positive direction.
3. He was far more confident person than earlier
4. Clarity about life emerged and he started enjoying quality time with family and friends.
5. His health too improved.
6. Ultimately he is more rich and knew well that what is really meaningful to him.
     
I hope knowing the art of refusal can help anyone to have the right balance in life. This article is based on my practical experience of more than 25 years and many interactive seminars I have addressed so far. If you like it , please share it for a nice cause of helping others.
Ashok Madrecha
  

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