“Ouch, I’m Sorry” – What You Say When Toes are Stepped On

“Ouch, I’m Sorry” – What You Say When Toes are Stepped On

Yesterday, I posted this Henry Ford's take on failure

on various social media platforms. The following is a real example of “Ouch, I’m Sorry” – a simple and powerful diversity technique.

One of my trusted friends and allies sent me a private message. Here are excerpts of our exchange.


My friend:

“I love the sentiment of the quote you pushed out on social media today. I wish you could have found one from someone who was not a known antisemite.”



“You know. The irony occurred to me after the fact. Especially, because not only was he anti-Semitic, he was one of the meanest racially biased people of his time.

I wrestle with what to do when the message resonates and the messenger doesn’t.

May I share our exchange publicly?

As always, I appreciate your correction. And I appreciate that you do it privately.”


My friend:

“You are so awesome. Absolutely share. People need to focus on intent and they often don’t. I know that you never would intentionally be unkind or uncaring. That’s never your message, never your intent, and never a part of who you are.”


“Thank you so much for your friendship, love, and support. You mean the world to me!”


In the midst of the recent pandemonium, it is my wish that people be brave and start and continue conversations like this.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *