saying no makes you part of the problem, instead of solution

Saying No to ‘No’

Gee Ranasinha Business, Communications, Marketing

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A call to all managers out there: Why is “No” your favorite word?

Do you really think that by saying that you won’t do it, and that you won’t support it, means that the project won’t happen?

Well, let me let you into a secret: a manager’s ability to stop a project just by saying ‘no’ went out with Netscape Navigator.

Saying No Doesn’t Mean It Won’t Happen

When you say no, you don’t stop the project. You just lose your chance to make sure that your department’s priorities get considered.

By saying an (ineffective) ‘no’, you’re maximizing the cost of the fix and looking like an obstructionist – both at the same time.

If you want to leave the project’s cost and effort in other departments’ hands, that’s fine. But participate enough to keep the project from fallout raining down on your department in the future.

Of course it would better if you got involved in the project yourself; but at least this way you’ll have a say in how things go. You’ll know more about what may go wrong.

Perhaps you’ll have one less mess to deal with this time next year.

Assuming that you haven’t already been fired by then, for being part of the problem.

About the Author
Avatar for Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha

Gee Ranasinha is CEO and founder of KEXINO. He's been a marketer since the days of 56K modems, lectures on marketing and behavioral economics at a European business school, and was noted as one of the top 100 global business influencers by (those wonderful people who make financial software).

Originally from London, today Gee lives in a world of his own in Strasbourg, France, tolerated by his wife and young son.

Find out more about Gee at Follow him on Twitter at KEXINO, on Facebook at, or on LinkedIn at


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