Say “yes” to “no”
At work, saying “no” is just as important as saying “yes”. It is a skill essential to professional success. While many employees, especially new ones, want to prove themselves professionally, taking too much can actually lead to poor work and even burnout, burnout or resentment towards others, said Tonya Moffitt. , CPA, Managing Partner of Merina + Co., An accounting and consulting firm in Tualatin, Ore., Speaking on the topic of protecting your time at the AICPA and CIMA Global Women’s Leadership Summit .
Here are her tips for turning down requests for your time while remaining brilliant for your employer:
Realize that time is precious. It is important to recognize that time is limited, both personally and professionally. When you take on a new project or assignment, you’re actually saying “no” to something else in your life, Moffitt said. It’s up to you to decide what ranks where in your life.
“I always use the rule of thumb that time is our most precious gift to give,” she said. “Therefore, when I say ‘no’, I say ‘yes’ to spend more time with my husband, children, family and friends.”
Practice. Moffitt suggests that people who are uncomfortable saying “no” practice saying it. “You can say it to yourself in front of the mirror or to a pet or an object, then you can practice saying it to other people you feel comfortable with,” he said. she suggested.
Then start to decline the small events in your personal life. “The more you practice saying ‘no,’ the easier it will be to start saying no to bigger, harder things,” said Moffitt, who also volunteers with Forward Stride, a horse-riding center in the UK. Oregon.
Evaluate your commitments. When someone asks you something, don’t say “yes” or “no” immediately. Ask for time to think about it. You can say something like, “Can I respond to you after checking my current commitments?” Moffitt said. Or, when working with a leader or supervisor, you can also add, “I want to make sure I don’t make too many commitments and jeopardize my existing commitments.”
One idea suggested by Moffitt is to keep track of the time that each of your engagements requires with an Excel file. His includes clients, project names, and the estimated number of hours it takes to complete each one, giving him instant analysis of what’s on his plate.
Suggest alternatives. If you decide you can’t say “yes”, you can still show commitment by offering viable alternatives. For example, you can recommend someone else who can handle the request, or ask how you can re-prioritize ongoing projects and assignments so that you can take on the new task.
Do not apologize. If you turn down someone or something, don’t feel guilty. “If you say ‘no’ that’s perfectly okay and you don’t need to apologize for it,” Moffitt said. “It’s your life.”
By learning to say “no,” you’ll be able to say “yes” to more of the things that matter, Moffitt said. “We tend to want to do it all, and we can’t do it all,” she said. “We have to value our time.”
Join hundreds of accounting and finance professionals committed to creating an inclusive and egalitarian profession at AICPA and CIMA Global Women’s Leadership Summit 2021, held live online and in Dallas from November 3-5.
– Dawn Wotapka is a freelance writer based in Georgia. To comment on this article or suggest an idea for another article, contact Courtney Vien, a JofA editor-in-chief at [email protected].