Rebuild Respect: Conditional to Unconditional Apologies | #PeopleSkills

When interactions go terribly wrong, unconditional apologies rebuild respect. If you’ve every received an unconditional apology, you know exactly why and how it does this. How can you avoid the trap of giving conditional apologies and always offer unconditional apologies that rebuild respect?



Rebuild Respect: Image is the word respect in a sculpture

Rebuild Respect from Conditional to Unconditional Apology

Image by Patrick Marioné via Flickr Creative Commons License.


Rebuild Respect With Unconditional, Not Conditional, Apologies

Conditional apologies filled with “buts” and explanations of why you said or did something make the initial harm worse. As you focus on defending yourself or even placing blame on others, your words say “I matter, you don’t.” This disrespect for others blocks all hopes to rebuild respect.

Rebuild Respect: Avoid the Trap of Conditional Apologies

Before you give an apology, check your beliefs and attitudes. Ask yourself:

  • Who is important? Me or everyone?

  • How will they feel if I defend myself or blame them?

  • How will they feel about me after that?

  • What is my goal for future interactions with them?

  • Do I have the self-confidence and inner strength to give an unconditional apology?


In the end it comes down to what value you put on mutual respect. Is it more important to you than feeling like you’ve won? If yes, give unconditional apologies by:

  1. Eliminating all “buts” and “ifs” from your apologies

  2. Avoiding all blaming of others

  3. Omitting all explanations of why you said or did what you said or did

  4. Say, I am sincerely sorry or similar words.



If this still hasn’t convinced you that showing respect for others is critical, remember …



I wish us all the continued courage to put others needs ahead of our own when we have hurt them. I wish us all the courage to rebuild respect!



What do you wish for? What are your thoughts on this?



From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Post:
Unconditional Apology: The Perfect Chance to Build Trust in Yourself

©2017 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.


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