Leaders have been encouraged to stop making excuses and simply apologize when they make mistakes. Good advice, but it isn’t enough to say you’re sorry.
It really isn’t that hard to apologize. What is really hard is changing your behavior, so that you don’t mess up again.
Think about the last time you had to apologize at work. Ask yourself:
Do you understand the root cause of the problem?
Have you taken steps to correct it?
Does the wronged party know about your efforts to make a real change?
Leadership means saying you’re sorry and then doing something about it. If you can’t do the second step, you’d better practice your heart-felt apology. You’ll need to say it again soon.
Change is easier with a partner.
Photo from iStockphoto.