How To Refuse Additional Work Without Annoying Your Boss [Infographic]

How To Refuse Additional Work Without Annoying Your Boss [Infographic]
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Sometimes, a work request from your boss isn’t worth fulfilling. Maybe it’s impossible in the allotted time frame. Maybe it’s a different department’s responsibility. Or maybe it’s simply “one thing too many” when you’re already overworked.

Unfortunately, refusing a directive from your colleague or manager is easier said than done; especially if you’re shy or hate to rock the boat. This infographic outlines five ways to avoid extra tasks without feeling guilty.

The infographic below comes from the small businesses funding outfit The Business Backer. It explains how to say “no” when you’re given one task too many and outlines the best ways to approach the conversation. It also offers tips to help you determine whether a directive should be refused or not.

“Next time you find yourself overburdened with work, talk with your boss,” The Business Backer explains on its blog. “You shouldn’t feel guilty if you’re working for the good of the team.”

How To Refuse Additional Work Without Annoying Your Boss [Infographic]

[Via The Business Backer]


  • I think the key to refusing a task is not to refuse it. The key is to ask your boss about priority. Just ask them which task the believe has the lowest priority because you have to put something on hold in order to do the new task. It’s simple, honest and work focused.

    I’d also disagree with the do it in person not email comment. This is especially true if you have asshole bosses. I firmly believe in getting stuff in writing. You don’t want to have a discussion with your boss where they say “ok put that monthly reports off for two weeks while you work on this” then have no proof that they asked you to put the reports off for two weeks. A simple solution is to discuss in person then confirm via email. Doesn’t have to be a detailed one, just a short dot point type one;

    “Just wanting to confirm as per our discussion the I will do A, B & C and item D is being put on hold til this date”.

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