When you need to make an apology for something:
- Take action sooner rather than later.
- Don’t avoid and skirt the issue (the way politicians do when they routinely refer to their mistakes as “oversights”).
- Think through what you want to say.
- Phrase it carefully, write it down, and rehearse it.
- Plan where, when, and how you’ll say it.
- Be genuine and sincere when you express regret.
- Take responsibility. Don’t try to justify, find a scapegoat,or shift culpability. Explain the actions to be taken going forward to prevent a repeated incident. Explain the change that you will make to remedy the wrong: “Here’s what I’m doing. . . .”
- Make amends and reparations, and make the situation right.
- Explain the likely penalty if you don’t carry out your commitment.