How To Apologize
In the long and troublesome life of ours, we all are ought to make mistakes in both professional and unprofessional life. In case if we don’t, then certainly we aren’t living a normal human life, we are then certainly just living as a machine, customized with sorted functions. A mistake made is a sign that you are trying something new in life to achieve better than before. Apparently if you had made any mistake in your personal life, then certainly you don’t need to apologize from such formal measures. Point of trouble comes when you make a mistake in your professional life. You definitely cannot just always go and apologize by just one word, ‘sorry,’ to anyone in your professional life. At times, you need to present a formal apology letter to the concerned person. Here are few tips and techniques along with few sample apology letters to help you type your letter of apology.
Analysis Of Mistake
Congrats! You have done first step of writing an apology letter. You have made a mistake, that’s why you are here to make good of it. So when you have successfully accomplished the first step of writing an apology letter, move on to the second step of doing the analysis of your mistake.
Making a mistake can be the task of left hand, but it’s analysis is sometimes a rocket science. You cannot really yourself judge what’s the intensity of your mistake and how it have affected the concerned person. Whenever we judge our mistake, we all are tend to be partial towards us and we are bound to take the matter rather lightly on other’s part. Therefore it’s quite necessary that you need to make assessment of your mistake by putting yourself in the shoe of the person whom you have hurt.
Know, at what intensity same action might have affected you, if the mistake was made by someone else against you. Then only you can make an effective letter of apology and present it accordingly with required actions.
So, when the apology is for bad behavior towards anyone in touch with you in professional capacity, then you should know where you have gone wrong with words and behave as per your designation and the concerned person’s authority. Make assessment in your words, that what inappropriate words you might have used or where you have crossed the boundary of your professional ethical behavior.
General Requirements Of An Apology Letter
- Mention What Your Mistake Is
After mentioning the basic addressing and the subject of your mistake, second vital step is to mention your actual mistake. Yes of course the reader is all aware about the mistake you have committed but when you yourself will give details about it and when you’ll accept the same by your own drafted words, it in itself is a form of apology. Do not hesitate to accept the entire mistake on your part and present the details of impact as per your analysis. Your apology letter should obviously have all details regarding your mistake. You must mention about both your wrong words and bad behavior in anger or frustration.
- Accept You Have Hurt Them
The fact that you have made mistake and planning to write an apology letter about is in a factual evident that your words or behavior might have hurt someone. Thus don’t be reluctant to accept the same fact in between your words of letter of apology. When you accept the fact that your actions have caused emotional damage to someone then it depicts that you are regretting and repenting on your behavior and ought not to repeat the same. Do take care of your words, they shouldn’t be flowery and extra cheesed to make your apology letter look fake or informal.
- Express Regret
When you are up to write a letter of apology then in such case your apology letter must express that you know that you are guilty and have remorse for whatever happened. Your words should convey the reader that the actions caused have hurt you too later on and you are actually sorry for the emotional damage caused.
- State Desire To Bring Change In Future
When mistake is of bad behavior then in such case too you must accept the responsibility of your actions and you must suggest how you can make good of the wrong done and bring a change in future, to not to repeat the same actions and cause the same damage to the person. As precisely an apology letter cannot work as an eraser to rectify the same mistake again and again thus your words must convey that you will make sure that same mistake will not be repeated in future on your part.
To Whom You Are Apologizing
In your professional capacity, you share relations with different people on different levels of profession. But mistake will obviously not gonna ask you beforehand about it’s occurrence, it’s intensity or even about the consequences. A mistake of bad behavior can make your encounter with your customer, colleague, subordinate and yes even with your boss. Apology Letter is obviously not water, that can fit in same state in any container. On each level of profession your words of apology are definitely going to be altered as per the relation and intensity of mistake. Here are a few samples of letter of apology on different levels of professional relations.
- Apology To Customer : When your mistake is within the organisation and it’s team then it is comparatively easy to handle and deal with than to a mistake made with the customer of organisation. A customer is obviously a part of organisation’s professional family but still a customer is rather different from other professional levels. It’s even more complex and dangerous to deal with than with the mistake made to your boss, as here goodwill is on verge. Bad behavior of any employee will depict the bad behavior of entire organisation. One customer lost is definitely loss of chain of customers who are in contact with the victim customer. So anyway if you have made mistake to any of your customer then the apology letter should definitely be more submissive and liberal than in other case. Your words should directly state that you are highly regretting your behavior and you are giving a hundred percent guarantee that the same shall never be repeated in future. In this case, sometimes you need to apologize even if you thinks you were not at hundred percent fault. Still, your words must be convincing enough to make the customer feel that you are taking cent percent accountability of your bad behavior and you are giving assurance that same shall not be repeated. Here is a sample letter for apology to customer:
- Apology To Boss/Senior : After the customer, one more dangerous level of mistake made is the mistake committed against your boss. At times you might lose your temper and end up saying inappropriate words or making bad behavior towards your boss or senior. Now who would like to risk their future promotions, incentives, perks and any other professional growth. So better write an apology letter to undo your mistake. Here too your words should be liberal and you shouldn’t be reluctant to accept your mistake. Sometimes when you are apologizing in this case without your mistake, then keep in mind that you shouldn’t be submissive for more than required, to allow your boss to exploit you in professional or personal capacity. Craftily learn to handle the situation by retaining healthy relations with the boss and simultaneously saving your self esteem. Here is a sample to illustrate how to apologize to your boss.
- Apology To Colleague : In any corporate office co-workers and colleagues play the role of catalysts for one another. They in their individual capacity interact with you and can bring change in your work without undergoing change in themselves as individual capacity of their own. They frame you the work environment which can be affirmative or not. Thereby in a sense it is of utmost importance to share healthy bond with them in order to made sure of mental peace during work. Hence, in case if you have made a mistake against your co-worker and you factually aren’t comfortable to apologize personally then do make a formal apology letter in your professional capacity. Keep in mind that your words aren’t to be too much flattering to make your letter a fake one or even highly formal to anyway display your arrogance. A little informal frame here may work. Know to make a balance. Here is a sample of apologizing to your colleague.
- Apology to Subordinate : A bad behavior’s mistake is most likely to happen with this class as at times your work stress or even personal stress might force you to relieve your stress on people whom you can control. But just like customers and, co-workers and boss, subordinates too play important role in your work culture. Only a satisfied staff can contribute fully towards targets and accomplishment of organisational goals which will subsequently help in your personal growth. Here definitely you’ll apologize only if you are under certain mistake, thus do not hesitate to ask fro sorry, if you have discovered your mistake. You can mention here the mistakes of concerned person that lead to the situation, this is actually mostly necessary to keep the professional distance between you and your subordinates. Here is a sample of apology letter to subordinates.
Your letter of apology must have a line of expression of gratitude to seek the acceptance of your apology by the person to whom you are writing the letter. In almost all cases you should professionally and formally frame it to mention that you are looking for their reply for your apology letter.
Writing an apology letter is a professional and formal duty that anyone can fulfill. But literally asking for someone’s forgiveness is definitely an art that not everyone can hold. A personal and verbal sorry in any case can always better present your apology than the formally phrased words.