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I'm Sorry


A favorite blog of mine is Trust Matters by Charles H. Green, who wrote up a great post on apologies and forgiveness. He gives a list of what makes for a proper apology.

1. Full acknowledgement of the offense
2. An explanation
3. Genuine expresssion of remorse
4. Reparations for damage
5. The final gallant act of apology is to release your former victim from any expectation of forgiveness. No matter how noble you have been, he will forgive - or refuse to forgive - on his own terms. That is his right.
He elaborates further on this by saying:
Apologies should not be tainted by forgiving, or by seeking forgiveness. Those have their place, but it’s elsewhere.

A good apology tries to set aright something that you set awry by impinging on another's will. It's only appropriate that the apology itself refrain from further imposition of will. Hence the separation from forgiving or forgiveness.

In other words, an apology has no agenda. It's simply a statement of fact: I screwed up and I'm willing to make up for it.

That's tough stuff. How hard that is to do personally, but also professionally, whether it's to a co-worker, to a manager, or to a customer.


Tags: relationships
by Brett Rogers, 7/17/2007 1:48:36 PM



Yeah, it is tough stuff, as you say hard in all walks of life. If it weren't, I guess we'd all be doing it all the time and it wouldn't be remarkable. Thanks for remarking on it.




Posted by Charles H. Green (, 7/17/2007 5:53:02 PM

I often tell people the the apology is Latin for "screw you". I'm only somewhat joking when I say it. How many times have we given or goten an apology and neither party feels the better for it? More stuff to work on. Thanks Brett!



Posted by Annette (, 7/18/2007 2:47:15 PM

Latin for "screw you" - I love it! lmao



Posted by Brett Rogers (, 7/18/2007 3:46:16 PM

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