It's one of the first things we learn in school: when you do something wrong, say you're sorry. But once we've put away childish things, apologizing can sometimes make us look weak instead of accountable. So should you say you're sorry at work, or maintain your power position?
Imagine a world in which no one ever said sorry. If you pictured a society composed entirely of stodgy businessmen, frowning and adjusting their ties, it wouldn't be strange. The debate over whether or not to apologize will probably rage on for as long as there are corporations and leaders to run them. On the pro-apology side, you have experts who say being accountable is not only correct, but ultimately more productive; on the con side, you have the folks who feel that saying "I'm sorry" is tantamount to announcing weakness, possibly in front of the board. So who's right?
We all make mistakes. It's part of life. But, that doesn't make it any easier to recover (in the eyes of others and within yourself) when you misstep at work. We're not talking about navigating a difference of opinion here, but rather an actual error that's plain as day for all to see and know. It can be hard to move through a time or situation where you've fumbled, but it's really important to recover and handle your mistakes in a positive way. Here are some tips.
Whether you’re a high-ranking executive or an entry-level employee, being too remorseful could negatively affect your reputation as a professional and cause others to perceive you as weak. We’ll examine how too many apologies could leave your career in a sorry state of affairs.