efangelist

putting the FAN in evangelism – spreading your messages by daring to share what you are a FAN of

How to make an effective apology – and get on with things. Great lesson from #Rugby coverage

Here’s a good way to make an effective apology and smoothy move on to the next thing.

SM BC apology

I saw a great example of the technique used during the coverage of Bledisloe Cup II at Eden Park – and it helped diffuse my anger at poor performance during the coverage. I’m talking about the poor audio quality at a crucial time when I really wanted to hear!

I enjoy watching the Rugby and hearing what the expert commentators have to say.

At half time Stirling Mortlock was talking with Kurtley Beale – but the audio was terrible and crackly and intermittent.

KB BC

Then there were great slow motion shots of highlights and experts talking – but there was no sound. And I really wanted to hear what they were saying. I got very cranky.

Then they came back and host Scott Mackinnon gave a strategically swift apology – that, in my opinion, moved on smoothly to the action of the next thing.

SM SM EP BC

Here’s roughly what he said. Note the smooth move on to the next thing – getting on with it.

We’d just like to apologise for the audio issues we had at half-time.
We have sorted them out. Let’s hope the Wallabies can sort out their second half as well.
Let’s go straight back to the expert commentary team.

Here’s why I reckon it is such a good example – and how you can use this technique too.

TB LL mosaic

I often help business presenters be prepared with a “bag of tricks” to help them recover if/when things go wrong in a presentation. I also help organisations word and practise delivering apologies. Yes, at a top level, execs prepare for when things go wrong!

When you need to apologise, remember:

1. Your audience will usually appreciate an apology (even a brief one) if they have been inconvenienced. TICK TO THE ABOVE EXAMPLE.

2. Your audience likes to know you’ve take action to fix a problem so it doesn’t happen again. TICK

3. Don’t loiter or linger for too long on the negative – the past of what went wrong. The above apology seems to move from the apology to the next thing almost “in the same breath”. BIG TICK! I often encourage clients to move on in the same sentence (with a conjunction, joining word)

4. Have something positive to move on to. TICK. In a presentation – you’ll have some specially selected positive snippet of information to move on to after your apology.

Now, we can all use this simple apology model/structure. You don’t have to be a commentator in some major sporting event.

Just remember this simple structure or order:

1. Brief Apology
2. Brief Assurance of action taken to correct
3. Smoothly and swiftly move on to something more positive – with some linking words and preferably “in the same breath” or sentence”
4. Keep moving forward – get on with it.

APOLOGISE, KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON.

Thanks Scott for such a good example of an apology!

My dissatisfaction dissipated. Plus, I got more than an just an apology from you – I got a great example of how to smoothly word and deliver an apology.

———
boys and balls

If you enjoyed this post – Let’s connect:
If you found this post interesting you can follow me and connect with me.
I blog about fun pop culture stuff as well as more serious business communication tips.
@tonybiancotti

Linked In – under Tony Biancotti
Or you can follow this blog.

These days, lots of people and organisations need help with how to COPE with too much work, too much information, too many meetings, delivering difficult news, business writing, effective e-mail, e-mail overload, cross-cultural communication, better social media engagement etc. I like to help people COPE.

TBCope.001

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s