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Sometimes you just have to stop and say sorry.

I started my IT career as a mail administrator. It meant, then, that I got between 100 and 200 critical emails a day. I developed, and still, have the very bad habit of not sending or replying to long emails. I tend to send short emails. I realize I do that from time to time, if you don’t know me, you may be offended. I thought it would be prudent to share, that I normally don’t respond to emails with long discourses. I know I probably should, but it is one of those things that is hard to change.

Sometimes I am oblivious to the offense, not personally meaning to offend anyone. Based on that I feel like I should also apologize for the offense not intended if taken. I spend a lot of time talking about and sharing both communications patterns and antipatterns. They, the two, are linked. Patterns show repeatable processes. Anti-patterns are the opposite of patterns for the most part. Anti-patterns are also repeatable and structured. They are different only in the impact when referring to communications.

One of the biggest impacts is the miss mixing of patterns and the mixing of some patterns and some anti-patterns. I think, having spent a lot of time considering the reality of communication that sometimes it is important to apologize. I don’t care how smart you are, how nice you are or whatever it is that makes you great; you will offend someone. The best of us offend by accident. The worst of us do it on purpose. But all of us, from time to time should just say “sorry, I did not mean to offend.”

What do you think?

7 points
Legend

Written by DocAndersen

I am a long time blogger and technology poster.I focus on what is possible, but I also try to see what is coming. In recent years I have been focused on sharing the memories of my family, as part of my Family History Project.

10 Comments

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  1. It depends… some people have too many “taboos” and are too narrow-minded. Like I’ve a classmate who doesn’t like others to dislike her idol…

    But of course it’s not wise to offend them on purpose.

    • That i think is the dance of the online world. You are so right. But we sometimes have to repsond to online material, only to find that the original poster wasn’t asking a question they were making a statement.

      Sad in the end becuase it limits effective communication.

  2. I try not to offend people in the first place, but I know my ideas are offensive to many. I’m not sure it’s a sin to offend people with words unless the spirit means to offend. One problem is that people are much quicker to take offense when confronted with opposing ideas than they used to be. Whatever you say may offend someone unintentionally. Even eating a hamburger might offend someone. Do you need to apologize for that? When I have truly wronged someone, intentionally or unintentionally, I will apologize quickly and ask forgiveness. I won’t apologize for being white or eating meat, or having beliefs that conflict with those others have. But all those things will offend some people.

    • It is a line we have to be careful about. I know I offend people, a blanket apology from time to time is usually enough. Some people I offend, and frankly mean to offend. When I do, then I don’t apologize.
      I think the most telling issue today is the reality of asking a question, then get offended when someone disagrees with your point. I have called that smartest person in the room syndrome in the past (how dare you to disagree with me, I am the smartest person in the room)!

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