In a previous post, I talked about the power of an apology. Then today I ran across this study. How powerful is an apology? A new study finds that businesses who apologize to unhappy customers are more likely to keep their business than when they offer the individuals cash. Researchers worked with a company involved in about 10,000 eBay sales a month. When customers gave negative or neutral feedback, the company randomly offered them either an apology or cash in exchange for taking down the negative feedback. About 45 percent of those who were offered an apology withdrew their negative complaint, while only 23 percent of those who were offered cash did so.
Apparently for many people an admission of failure is worth more than making it right financially.
In the book UNchristian, David Kinnamon discusses the perceptions that people outside the church have of Christians. One that we have heard for years is… the church is full of hypocrites. But then Kinnamon said something that has stuck with me since I first read the book. In the study he found that people are less bothered by the fact that Christians mess up, and more bothered by “our swagger.”
I guess it’s not so much about being right, as it is about being humble.