How and When to say “I’m sorry”

How – Sincerely and Without Reservation
When – Always!

In customer service a sincere apology can go a long way. Is the customer service person to blame personally?  Almost always not, but an apology does not need to be an admission of fault nor is it about you personally.  It is an expression of good will and empathy.  I think we’d all agree that most people want to know that the person on the phone is listening.

If you’ve been fighting with your computer for most of the night and it is FINALLY morning.  The customer service folks are FINALLY at work.  Which response would you rather hear?

“You need to disable Pop-up Blockers on your browser window for the software to work.”

– OR –

“I’m sorry for any frustration you have experienced.  You will be able to use the software if you disable Pop-up Blockers on your browser window.  If you are concerned about security, you can enable the Pop-up Blockers again once you are done with the software.”

The warm fuzzy didn’t hurt anyone and the customer service person is not taking or passing blame.  It also strengthens the bond your customer has with your company and it will result in a shorter call time.   It’s much easier to help someone who is calm.

Try out these apologies when the problem is not the company’s fault:
“I’m sorry for any inconvenience that may have been caused by this misunderstanding.”
“I’m sorry that you feel frustrated about .”
“I’m sorry you had to take time to call today.”

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