Nance was asked by Upjourney how to apologize for missing a meeting–something a lot of people have been dealing with since shifting to work from home. Here is her response:
Even the most reliable, organized people I know have missed Zoom meetings over the past couple of weeks. It’s not unusual for us to lose our focus and motivation when we are grieving the loss of our freedoms and the world as we thought we knew it. Although most of us are willing to cut each other breaks, an effective apology will restore others’ faith in us and possibly give us a much-needed sense of normalcy. Here’s how to give one:
- Apologize for the specific error you made. In this case, apologize for missing the meeting.
- Acknowledge the importance of avoiding such errors. State that you know the meeting was important for the specific reason it was and why it was important you participated.
- State what you will do to make amends. Offer to do independent research, get someone to debrief you, or whatever it will take to ensure you are completely informed an ready to move forward without any additional work from the people affected by your absense. If you’re not sure what will make amends, ask someone with authority to determine that.
- Commit to taking actions to avoid similar issues in the future. Ensure the organizers you will use a double-entry and reminder system or whatever it will take. (Don’t ask them to remind you. The goal is to show you are accountable for your own actions and can be relied upon in the future.)
Click here to read the complete article, which includes helpful tips from others, in addition to Nance.
For more tips on apologizing:
- Read “How to Give an Effective and Complete Apology”
- Read “Resolving Conflicts with Adult Children”
- Read “My Ex-Boyfriend Dated a Racist*”
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Nance L. Schick, Esq., is a workplace attorney, ethno-religious mediator, and conflict resolution coach based in New York City. Her goal is to keep you out of court and build your conflict resolution skills so everyone has a better work experience. She helps managers and business owners have empowering conversations about emotionally-charged issues such as gender, race, religion, and disability. She is creator of the Third Ear Conflict Resolution process, author of DIY Conflict Resolution, and an award-winning entrepreneur acknowledged by Super Lawyers (ADR, 2018 & 2019), the New York Economic Development Corporation/B-Labs (Finalist, Best for NYC 2015 & 2016), U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2015 Blue Ribbon Small Business), Enterprising Women Magazine (Honorable Mention, 2014 Woman of the Year awards).