A comment, in response to a post by FrauTech at Design.Build.Play.
It's lessons like the Gibbs rule as expressed by William the Coroner ("Never apologize, it is a sign of weakness") that make me fear that my job is making me a worse person. I'm not saying William is wrong. I'm actually saying there's a huge ring of truth to that statement. But I don't want to be the kind of person that thinks like that.
I've spent a fair amount of time getting discouraged and being afraid that the only way to get ahead is by becoming an overly aggressive, ethically questionable person. Luckily, I found a really great role model before I abandoned all hope. This role model is a very successful, full professor who is kind, honest, and ethical. If he doesn't know something, he doesn't make something up and say it with authority. He says he doesn't know. But he says it with confidence and authority, not apologetically or with sheepishness.
What I learned from watching this role model is not that I shouldn't apologize, but that I shouldn't feel bad and blame myself for so much stuff. And if I'm not to blame, then I don't need to apologize.