Apologies are hard. Regardless if it’s your spouse, kids or a friend who you need to apologize to. Clients are difficult to apologize to as well. Unfortunately society isn’t making it any easier for us to say sorry but it’s a skill that has to be mastered.
As I am writing this, I can’t help but think about my time in Corporate America. The motto in our office was never admit you were wrong in your dealing with a client. Apologies lead to lawsuits. We would say bullshit things to clients like…”I’m sorry you feel this way….” The goal was to always put the issue back on the customer. It’s wasn’t us that had the problem it was the idiot client.
I’m sure many of you can relate to this on both sides. It’s really a shame too because this issue is getting worse not better. With the proliferation of lawsuits, everyone’s afraid to be a human being.
This presents both an issue and an opportunity for business owners. The challenge comes from being surrounded by a bunch of people who refuse to take ownership. The opportunity comes from being surrounded by these same people.
See the great news is that not accepting responsibility has become the norm and people are sick of it. Want to surprise someone? Own your mistakes. Admit you are wrong.
Want to build a deep connection with your clients? Apologize to them and mean it. Doing this separates you from the droves of people who lack character and are only concerned about covering their ass.
In his book, The 5 Laws the Determine All Of Life’s Outcomes, Brett Harward talks about how we receive criticism from people. Most of the time, we try and refract that criticism like a prism refracts light. We take some of the criticism but rarely do we accept all of it.
Brett challenged himself to start taking in all of the criticism that he received from people and saw tons of opportunity to improve that didn’t exist before. The best part about this is that you can really build connections with people when they see that you are willing to listen to what they have to say about your product/service.
We worry a lot about standing out from the crowd and getting people to know us. The great news is that you don’t have to resort to Jersey Shore style buffoonery to stand out. You just have to show people that you care about them. Admitting you’re wrong when you make mistakes and apologizing for it is a great first step.