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拒绝的艺术

2014-01-26    来源:fortunechina    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

不少老好人因为开不了口拒绝别人,结果额外承担的工作越来越多,直到喘不过气来。怎么办?只要掌握了拒绝的艺术,就可以摆脱这种困境,同时还不会断了自己的门路。

Dear Annie: I hope you don't think this is a dumb problem, but I need some advice on how to refuse when people ask me to do things that aren't part of my job description, without being rude about it or burning any bridges. Over the past several years, I've gradually become the "go-to" person in my department for more and more extra tasks. I'm happy to help out, even though it usually means staying an extra hour or two in the evenings to get everything done.

亲爱的安妮:当有人要求我去做不属于我份内的事情时,我该如何巧妙地拒绝,又不至于让自己看起来显得粗鲁无礼,同时又不会断了门路?希望您不会认为这是个愚蠢的问题,但我确实需要您的建议。过去几年,部门有额外的任务都会交给我,而且数量越来越多。我很愿意帮忙,虽然这通常意味着每天晚上要加班一两个小时来完成这些工作。

But now, my family has my elderly and ill father living with us, and I need to leave work at 6 p.m. on the dot to relieve the home-care nurse. So I want to bring up the idea of dividing the extra work I've been doing among the five other people on my team -- which sounds simple, except that all my life I've had trouble saying "no" to anything that anyone wants me to do. It's always been easier for me to just say yes than to deal with the feeling that I'm letting someone down. Do you or your readers have any advice? -- Doormat in Denver

可现在,与我住在一起的父亲年事已高,而且有病在身,我必须在下午六点钟准时下班,来接替保姆。所以,我想建议部门将原先我做的那些额外的工作分摊给其他五个人负责——听起来很容易,只是我生来不擅长拒绝。对我而言,相比让别人失望的感觉,我更愿意点头说“是”。您或您的读者有什么建议吗?——D.D.

Dear D.D.: First of all, I don't think this is a "dumb problem," and neither does Bob Burg, a speaker and author who frequently hears some variation of this question from audience members in his seminars at Fortune 500 companies. "Women tell me they have an especially hard time saying 'no,' but I think it's a problem for men, too," Burg says. "They just don't admit it as much.

亲爱的D.D.:首先,我并不认为这是一个“愚蠢的问题”。演讲家、作家鲍勃•伯格也有同样的观点。他在《财富》500强公司(Fortune 500)召开的研讨会上经常听到类似的问题。伯格说:“女性告诉我,她们在说‘不’的时候尤其困难。但我认为男性也面临同样的问题,只是他们很少承认而已。”

"Most people are generally nice and don't like to disappoint other people," he adds. "Where it gets counterproductive is when that impulse takes over and makes us do things that aren't in our own best interests."

他补充说:“大多数人都很友好,不喜欢让别人失望。只要违背了我们的下意识,就是冲动占据上风的时候,结果就会让我们做出一些不符合自己最佳利益的事情。”

Moreover, the situation you're in -- where a job just keeps expanding, little by little, until you're loaded down with all kinds of extra duties that aren't technically your responsibility -- is so common that it actually has a name: Scope creep. "You often hear people in client businesses complain about this," says Burg. "It happens a lot in consulting, where there are certain set expectations at the outset of a project, but the scope just keeps expanding until it's gone way over the line of what was agreed upon or what's reasonable."

而且,你的情况是,工作量正在一点点地增加,直到自己背负了所有额外的工作。而严格意义上来说,这些工作并不属于你的职责范围。这种情况非常普遍,甚至有一个专门的名称:范围蔓延。伯格说:“我经常听到客户公司的员工抱怨这方面的问题。范围蔓延在咨询中很常见,因为在咨询项目中,对项目结果有固定的预期,但范围却持续蔓延,直到超出了原先协定的或合理的范围。”

So how do you cure your scope creep? Burg, who wrote a book called Adversaries into Allies: Win People Over Without Coercion or Manipulation, takes issue with the notion, popularized lately by Oprah Winfrey and others, that "No is a complete answer." "I cringe when I hear that. Saying 'no,' period, when someone asks you to do something is rude. It also tends to alienate people, which can make your job more difficult and cut you off from future opportunities."

应该如何解决这个问题呢?伯格曾写过一本书,书名是《化敌为友》(Adversaries into Allies: Win People Over Without Coercion or Manipulation),专门谈到过这个问题。他认为,“说‘不’是个完结性的答案”,而这个观点最近因为奥普拉•温弗瑞等人得到了广泛的流传。“有人对我说‘不’的时候,我会感到很难堪。当有人要求你做某件事时,直接说‘不’是很无礼的行为。这种做法会让自己与其他人日益疏远,进而让自己的工作寸步难行,最终丧失了未来的发展机会。”

A better approach, he says, is to call an informal, five-minute meeting with your five coworkers and explain that, from now on, you'll be leaving the office no later than 6. "Frame this announcement as an 'I' message," Burg suggests. Prepare a little speech beforehand where you say something like, "I need to bring something up. I've allowed myself to take on a lot of extra tasks here and, while I've enjoyed helping out, it's an issue now because I have to leave at 6 for family reasons."

他建议,更好的方法是与五位同事进行一次非正式的简短会议,向他们解释,从现在开始,你必须在下午6点下班。伯格说:“从‘我’的角度来传达你的信息。”提前准备好讲话内容,比如:“我有事要说一下。我在团队里一直在承担一些额外的任务。虽然我很高兴能对团队有所帮助,但现在我遇到问题了。由于家庭原因,我必须在6点准时下班。”

"Notice how often you say 'I', rather than 'you,' as in, 'You all have been dumping too much extra stuff on me for a while now,'" says Burg. "Focusing on the 'I' keeps people from feeling they're being accused, which will just make them defensive" -- and less likely to go along with your plan to redistribute the workload. Then say you'd like to work out a system for sharing the extra work equally among the group, and ask for suggestions about how best to do that.

伯格表示:“说话中注意使用‘我’和‘你们’的频率。比如‘一直以来,你们让我承担了太多额外的工作。’一味强调‘我’会让人们感觉受到了指责,结果只会让他们产生防御的姿态”——进而不太可能同意重新分配工作负担的建议。然后提出你可以帮忙制定一个制度,在团队成员之间平均分配额外的工作,同时征求他们有哪些更好的意见。

Particularly since you've always found it difficult to say no, "the toughest part is going to be the first couple of times after the meeting when someone tries to hand you one of those extra tasks," Burg says. "But be steadfast. Remind the person politely that you've already said you're no longer the only one responsible for whatever it is. Don't apologize, and don't give in.

既然你发现自己并不擅长拒绝,伯格说:“最困难的部分,是会面之后又有人将额外的工作交给你的时候。一定要坚定不移。礼貌地提醒对方,你已经说过了,自己不再是唯一负责所有额外工作的人。不必道歉,不要妥协。”

"What gets rewarded, gets repeated. We train people how to treat us, so if you always say yes, you're training these folks to keep asking," he adds. "But once you've retrained them, by gently reminding them that the situation has changed, you should have no problem." Here's hoping.

他补充道:“有好处的事情就会有人反复去做。别人对待我们的态度都源于我们自己的表现。所以,如果你总是说‘是’,别人就会不断地提出要求。但只要你温和地提醒他们,情况已经发生了变化,便能逐渐改变他们的做法,你的问题也就迎刃而解了。”祝你好运。

Talkback: Have you ever experienced "scope creep" at work? What did you do about it? Leave a comment below.

反馈:你在工作中有没有遇到过“范围蔓延”问题?你如何解决这个问题?欢迎评论。(财富中文网)



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