• Leigh Gerstenberger

The Power of Apology



In a wide-ranging conversation with a group of men recently, on how we could be better husbands, fathers and contributors to our community, the conversation turned to the ability of being able to admit our mistakes and ask forgiveness of others when we mess up.


During the discussion, one of my friends made a comment about the perfect way to apologize by using a process known as the Six Step Apology.


While this approach may have been around for a long time, this was the first I’d heard of it. My friend attributed the concept to Ford Taylor the founder of FSH Strategy Consultants and Transformational Leadership.


After acquainting myself with the process I was struck by the beauty of this commonsense approach to asking for forgiveness.


Here are the six steps, let me know what you think.


1. Acknowledge the offense: “I did _____.”


2. Admit, “I was wrong.”


3. Use the words, “I am sorry; I apologize.”


4. Ask, “Will you (when you can) forgive me?”


5. Say, “I give you permission to hold me accountable.”


6. Offer, “Is there anything else I need to apologize for?”

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