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Apology Emails: 3 Tools to Help

A good apology email goes a long way when canceling an appointment.  You ever get a message from someone declining a meeting in Outlook that had no apology or explanation in it?  I’m sure you have and, like me at times, wondered why that person couldn’t make it. Did you think it was rude or unprofessional? It may or may not be depending on the situation, but it could be perceived to be a bit rude by some people; so it’s important to send a quick apology email within your cancellation notification. It helps to be diplomatic and polite when doing so in English. Here are some quick tips to make your apology emails easy to write and effective.

3 Parts parts of an apology email

1. Apology
  • I’m sorry, but I can’t attend the meeting on Thursday.
  • I’m afraid that I can’t take part in the teleconference on Monday.
  • Unfortunately, I cannot meet you in Berlin on Tuesday.
2. Reason and additional information if necessary(rescheduling, requests, etc)
  • I have another meeting at this time I have to attend.  Could you please send me the minutes from the call?
  • I will be out of the office on a business trip.  Could we please reschedule for the following week?
  • I will be on vacation later this week.  Can we push back the call to next week?
3. Polite closing
  • Thank you for understanding.  I hope to see you next week.
  • Thanks for understanding.  See you next week.
  • I hope this doesn’t cause any inconvenience.  Have a good rest of the week.

Example of a good apology email

I’m sorry, but I can’t take part in the telecon on Tuesday the 14th.  I have to go to a meeting in Munich that day.  Could we reschedule the call for Thursday the 16th at the same time? 
Thanks for understanding and let me know what would work best for you. Have a good day.

Following the structure and using the phrases above should allow you to avoid confusing, or possibly offending, clients or colleagues.  Let us know what good emails have worked for you in the comments area below.