How to apologize at work

Have you made any mistake at work? Know the ways to apologize for it.

Apr 5, 2018, 19:52 IST
4 ways to apologize at work
4 ways to apologize at work

Relationships are the key resources which help one in developing the leadership qualities and in achieving success at work. You can put your work in the context; especially if you have developed and maintained relationships with those in power at work. But, what if you mistakenly jeopardize your relationships with them? It’s natural! You are human and therefore likely to make mistakes. It may a big or a mistake which could drastically affect your life even at your home. Don’t lose hopes but begin to think about the concrete steps which can help you to avoid such mistakes in future and of course about the ways to recover and apologize.  It may possibly strengthen your relationships at work if you successfully negotiate apology at work. It’s an art and every professional should know it because in professional life walkways are more damaging than the negotiating the disagreements.In this article, we will explain how to negotiate apology at work which can help you in your professional life.      

Be straight and understandable while negotiating  

The importance of clarity and straightforward communication becomes more important; especially when it comes to apologizing for mistakes at work. An honest reason in affectionately gruff tone can win over anyone and can help you to recover the damage caused by the mistake you have committed. On another hand, your dishonest and unclear reasons may create such a situation which could pose a threat to your overall professional life. So, offer a short, sincere apology when you commit any mistake at work. It would help you to admit your fault in a plain and clear manner which could somewhere help you to recover damages caused to your relationships with others at work.   

Listen attentively

If you don’t listen to your negotiating partner and just conveying the reasons for the mistakes, you may fail to convince him. To re-establish trust, you must listen and answer the questions being asked during apology negotiation. But, if you don’t have an answer, then ask ‘How can I correct my mistakes?” and begin to listen when you’re suggested to do anything in order to correct your mistakes. Try to keep your explanations short and make space for another person to communicate. It would help you to gain the information you need to know in order to re-correct or re-build trust. It would help you to win over your negotiating partner that could help you to get one more chance to correct and re-build trust.  

Send an appropriate gift

In case emails and phone calls don’t help you to engage the person whom you apologize, sending gift might serve the purpose. Most of the professional lose hope and stop to make in order apologize and re-build trust when they don’t get desired response from their managers, co-workers at work. And, they begin to prefer for walking away whenever they face same situations. Due to this, they never become able to build relationships and, therefore to achieve growth and success; especially in their professional life because relationships are essential for growth and success in the corporate world. So, choose an appropriate gift and send to the person whom you want to apologize. It would appeal him/her emotionally which could make him/her give you a chance to recover your mistake and re-build trust. 

Wait patiently

If you have respectfully conveyed and maybe even sent a gift to your manager or co-worker, wait until he/she reacts. Don’t email or make frequent phone calls just to remind him/her of your damage control drive or pursue him/her for a prompt decision. It might waste all your efforts which you have made in order to rebuild trust. And, once you again lose control over the things, you might not get one more chance even to send gifts and request him/her for pardon. So, be wise and patient. Give him/her space and time to think about you and your mistakes. And, put your request in clear and straightforward words when he responds to you. It would help you to let that person think about you that could agree with him/her give a chance to rebuild trust. 


The relationship is everything. Without it, no one can imagine even the survival; especially in the corporate society. But, the mistake has potential to damage even the closest relationship. Don’t worry! You can evade your relationship from a major by sincerely requesting for an apology, listening attentively, sending an appropriate gift and patiently waiting for a response. In this article, we have explained about how to request a pardon at work which can help you to strengthen your relationship at work.

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