In September, 2016, I spoke with three experts on how to say no in the most difficult situations.
- Mariano Mosquera, director of the “Transparency Observatory” at Catholic University of Córdoba, Argentina, who teaches classes for business professionals trying to resist corruption.
- Joshua Weiss, senior fellow at the Harvard Negotiation Project.
- Richard Bistrong, chief executive officer at Front-Line Anti-Bribery LLC and a former FBI cooperator who served 14 and a half months in federal prison for violating foreign bribery laws.
All three agreed that saying no to what is wrong can feel very risky. We could damage important relationships or our career — or put our safety at risk. But, they cautioned, in fraught situations, saying yes is also risky.
The key is in knowing how to say no.
Take a look at this blog post on strategy+business, How to Say No When It Really Counts, to learn about the strategies they recommend.
Tell me what you think! And, if you have a team or direct report that would benefit from learning constructive ways to say no, please drop me a note.
All the best,