Here’s a Template to Say “No” at Work

Here’s a Template to Say “No” at Work

There are times when you have to say “no” to things – whether it’s a new project or an extra request from a client. Saying “no” can be tough, but it’s important to do what’s best for your workload and mental health. This template will help make saying “no” at work a little easier.

Why saying no over email is hard

When you’re saying no to something over email, it can be easy to come across as unprofessional or even rude. After all, you’re not there in person to deliver the news – and the recipient can’t see your face or body language. This can make it hard to gauge how your message will be received, and it can be easy to come across as abrupt or even angry.

That’s why it’s important to take a few extra minutes to craft a response that is both professional and respectful. This template will help you do just that.

Saying no doesn’t have to be difficult. With this template, you can say “no” in a way that is both respectful and professional. Simply copy and paste the template into an email, and then customize it to fit your unique situation.

Here’s the template:

Hello ____,

Thank you for reaching out. I’m sorry to say that I am not able to _____ at this time. Thank you for thinking of me, and I hope you understand.



Your name

Customizing the template

Of course, every situation is different – so you’ll want to customize this template to fit your specific needs. Here are a few ways you can do that:

  • Add a personal touch: If you know the person you’re emailing, you may want to add a personal touch to your message. For example, you could say something like “I know you’ve been working hard on this project, and I’m sorry I can’t help out.”
  • Be specific: If you can, it’s always helpful to be specific about why you’re saying no. For example, you might say “I’m sorry, but I’m already overextended with other projects.”
  • Offer an alternative: If you’re unable to do what the person is asking, you may want to offer an alternative. For example, you could say “I can’t take on any new projects right now, but I might be able to help out in a few weeks.”
  • Thank them: Always remember to thank the person for thinking of you – even if you can’t do what they’re asking. A simple “thank you for thinking of me” will go a long way.

Saying no doesn’t have to be difficult – and with this template, you can have the tool so saying no is easier.

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