Sometimes you have to say no. So you can say yes. Focusing on what you do best means you sometimes have to say no. But what do you say no to. That is always a big question. It gets easier with experience, much easier. But, it is always a question.
I just read a post by Susan Mernit who works at Yahoo Personals. She has an excellent article on how to know what to say no to.
Over at Susan’s website she has learned to say no.
But if I’m clear on all that, why do I spend some much of my time saying No? Often, I say No because
* The project isn’t something we have the resources to do right now–and it’s not worth prioritizing over something else
* It’s a nice to have, not a must have
* The level of effort and the return don’t line up enough
* It’s distracting from our core business objectives–for the year or the quarter
* It’s overbuilding–we think it’s neat, but customers won’t notice
* It’s too bleeding edge (this is a subset of overbuilding)–we love the idea but the novelty outweighs the business impact