To make a good apology, it must be straightforward, timely and considered in the light of the particular public involved. It should include acknowledgement of having done something wrong, a sense of remorse, an attempt to repair the injustice and a promise not to commit the offense again. While that seems like an easy thing to do, some companies just can’t get apologies right and end up making the situation worse for themselves. Here are some popular examples of bad apologies.
“I apologize for not having been able to communicate directly earlier, and also apologize for people who died or were injured,” Takata president, Shigehisa Takada said. “I feel sorry our products hurt customers, despite the fact that we are a supplier of safety products.” The reason that this apology is bad is because it took a little too long to happen. It took months before he actually came into the media spotlight to make a formal apology about his company’s mistakes. With something as serious as a product causing multiple deaths, an apology should have come immediately.
“This was a couple of software engineers who put this in for whatever reason,” Horn said about cheating on emissions with the use of software in diesel cars to the House of Representatives Oversight and Investigations Committee, according to NBC News. “This was not a corporate decision. There was no board meeting that approved this.” Many people were not happy about this apology because it seem insincere.
“We’re sorry for the massive disruption it’s caused their lives. There’s no one who wants this over more than I do. I would like my life back,” BP executive Tony Hayward said after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster. This was a bad apology because he made it seem like he was only sorry that it happened because it has messed up his life.
After making comments about how Lululemon pants “don’t work for certain, some women’s bodies.” In a video apology, instead of apologizing for his comments, he apologized for people not liking what he said. He never said that he takes back what he said. He also never apologized to the customers that he offended and hurt, only the people of Lululemon that were affected by his actions. He should have apologized to the customers and actually seem sincere about it.