Every once in a while I make a mistake where I know I did something wrong but cannot pinpoint the exact problem. These are the worse kind of mistakes because I don't know what I need to learn to avoid repeating the mistake. As a result I often back away from the problem even though leaving the issue un-addressed may be yet another mistake.
I made one of these mistakes on this blog back in December of 2006. Sinan Karaca from InstallAware Software Corporation asked me to blog about their new WiXAware product. At the time, I had a very negative impression of the company based on my conversations with other people. While I was impressed with Sinan's presentation and believed that WiXAware showed great promise, I allowed my negative impression to color our discussion and, later, my two blog posts.
After realizing that something had gone wrong I backed away from the whole issue and left it unresolved.
A few weeks ago, Sinan reopened the discussion and we traded emails until it became crystal clear to me what mistake I had made 18 months ago. The fundamental mistake I made was that I never gave InstallAware the opportunity to address the issues I had based my negative impression on. In the recent email discussion, Sinan explained his side of the story and I came to realize how the misunderstandings began then spiraled out of control.
I apologized to Sinan and he forwarded my apology on to the WiXAware team. If I could undo my mistake, I would. Fortunately, Sinan was good enough to reopen the dialog when he saw an opportunity and help me see clearly what I did wrong and allow me to learn from it. I immediately offered to make my apology public in an effort to bring the issue to close and Sinan accepted.
Sinan Karaca and InstallAware Software Corporation, I apologize for the attitude I had in our first meeting and follow up posting. I fully admit that I should have given you the opportunity to explain up front and address any grievances I might have had. I'm sorry.
From here I hope that InstallAware and Sinan and I can start again. I also encourage you to develop you own impression of InstallAware Software Corporation. Finally, for those of you that haven't already made this mistake, please learn from mine.