One step back, two steps forward
When and how you say “no” at work will depend on many factors, including how much is on your plate and the people involved. But here are a couple of things you can try the next time you need to turn someone down. Just saying you’re busy won’t cut it, so take some time to explain your “no”. For example: “The team is already working overtime to finish the report by Tuesday. Is there something we could do to help after that?” Use a neutral but firm tone when saying no, as a meek tone may prompt the person to keep pushing, while a hostile and aggressive tone could damage your relationship. Keep your body language open by maintaining eye contact and keeping a relaxed posture.