The power of saying “I am sorry”

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On Kim Proctor ‘s Blog entry from December of 2006. I read last night the following

” …Recently I found that my online bank account had someone else’s name on it when I logged in. This gave me a scare. Who was this person? And why was their name on my account – and my name wasn’t showing up?

I use online banking a lot and wondered if this was someone trying to get into my account or if this was a computer error. It was a weekend when I discovered the error so I waited for early Monday morning and called the phone service at Bank of America.

They were as helpful as they could be despite the fact that they said the online banking phone service didn’t open for another two hours (that is nuts). After they tried to help me they told me not to be too afraid that someone was in my account that it was likely just a computer error. And they told me to visit my local branch to get more help.

Nonetheless it was nerve wracking to wait for the branch to open. I darted over right away and found someone quickly who could help me. Funny thing was they couldn’t figure out what happened and had to call the Connecticut branch that this other customer was from to find out more. What a crazy system. ” to read the rest of the story click the lick

The woman in the bank who helped me did promise to follow up with me and resolve it within 48 hours for sure. While I ended up calling her before she called me back, she was on the case and said it would be clear in 24 hours. It was.

But I have to say, not until the last 10 seconds of our last conversation did this banker tell me “sorry.” While it was not her fault – or anyone else’s I had talked to – no one said sorry at any step in the process. It was a very matter-of-fact treatment..” Read the full article here.

It reminded me of my training. I received as a young manager from a Syntax Traininer .(Syntax Training is to help employees and managers write and manage better.)

You may “..find it helpful to apologize when a situation has caused problems or hard feelings—even when you are not responsible for the situation. In these cases, “I am
sorry” does not mean “I am responsible.” It means “I care about you and your feelings.” Here are two examples at Prosper and ESI

“I am very sorry that the product has not made it to your home yet.”
“I am sorry that the e-book will require you
to take time and learn how to down load it sir.”

Don’t be sorry about apologizing! It is one of the best
steps you can take to maintain good relationships,
overcome hard feelings, nurture loyalty, and show
respect for other human beings. (The Power of Saying “I’m Sorry” By Lynn Gaertner-Johnston Founder, Syntax Training PDF)

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1 Comment

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One response to “The power of saying “I am sorry”

  1. nturley

    I really benefited from this article because the students that call in are usually frustrated or confused and they just need someone to walk them through their program and help them understand it. Saying “I’m sorry” makes they feel like someone is actually listening to them and trying to help them out. I’ve noticed that in saying “I’m sorry” it softens them up and they are more susceptible to listen.

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