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Freitag, 14. Juni 2019, 08:38

"I Prefer to Decline Rather Than Do a Poor Job"

"Not now" is a very useful phrase, particularly if you are in doubt. It is better to say "not now" and change your answer later to Yes than it is to say Yes and try to change your answer later to No.

"I Prefer to Decline Rather Than Do a Poor Job"

A school headmaster I know uses this rule of thumb when being asked to take on new responsibilities: "Can I do a good job?" he asks himself. "Do I have the time to do the matter justice, and do I have the skills?" If the answer is No, he says an outright No to the other. His No is actually a Yes to effectiveness and quality standards.

When you decline rather than do a poor job, you are not only affirming your own interests but also paying attention to the relationship. You will both be worse off -- and so will your relationship -- if you say Yes and then do a job that turns out to be unsatisfactory.

An electronics company, a client of mine, was asked by a leading customer for a new custom-designed product with a tight delivery date. The company's sales vice president was very tempted to say Yes, but he and his colleagues realized that their production was already under strain and the chances of meeting the customer's deadline at quality standards were not good. So they said No to the customer, thereby sparing themselves and their customer a lot of dissatisfaction. "It was very hard to do at the time, but it was the best No I ever delivered. And the customer came to appreciate it too, and valued our honesty with them up front," reflected the sales vice president to me later.

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