No One Nos : Learning to Say No to Bad Ideas is an article on A List Apart that discusses when and how to address those situations where, for a variety of reasons, your best option is to tell someone “No”.
Much of the first portion of the article presents case studies of people who had to face telling a client, boss, or workgroup that something wasn’t going to happen. Some of what is presented amounts to taking the time to evaluate what is being asked, and figuring out how to present alternatives that make better business sense.
Near the end, however, is a list of “takeaways” from the book “The Power of a Positive No” by William Ury. These are worth the effort to incorporate into our lives.
There are as many effective ways to say “no” as there are reasons to say “no” in the first place. Try to match the former with the latter.