Customer complaint procedures to make a difference


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Line for ORCANo one is immune to lousy customer service, but I may be more critical because I write a daily blog about customer service and often my own experiences. Admittedly I most likely delve into more of the procedural nuances that separate good customer service and experiences with the “WOW” services, but when it comes to poor service, I’m just as susceptible to the frustration as any of my family, neighbors, or coworkers. It’s absolutely inevitable that we will all be met with some unpleasant, frustrating, or even maddening experiences, but how we handle the situation is likely to make a difference in both the resolution as well as our own well-being.

Let us start from the beginning. When you want to complain about a product or a service, “Rule 101? demands you stay calm. Even though you may have been routed to different departments about your complaint, left on hold for what you consider an unreasonable amount of time, you must remember to state the situation clearly, explain your dissatisfaction, and do not dwell on the emotional distress you may be feeling. As entitled as you are to your own feelings, the idea is to fix the situation; not participate in an emotional battle and accuse the agent of being the bad guy.

So now you have made your point, and it’s time to follow-up the conversation in writing. You can send it by email or by regular mail, but the key to the writing follow-up is to be sure the name and address of your contact is clearly indicated. If your letter goes to a general customer service department, it may very well get lost and most likely never be answered. You will want your letter to be constructive. No one wants to read a 300 word tirade about a product you didn’t like or a service you didn’t think was up to par. Suggest what could be done to rectify the situation. Think about, within reason of course, what the company could do to have a mutually agreeable solution. Perhaps the company will take your suggestions.

Now here is where there might be some argument. Some consumers are very happy when a company or organization simply apologizes for bad service and offers the consumer a coupon for a discount. Is the ten percent discount on your next purchase just a buy off to make you come back? Has the company corrected the problem? As consumers we have the right to expect what we pay for; whether it be a product or service. As an example, in the case of an airline company keeping passengers waiting out on the tarmac for an unreasonable amount of time; the problem has been addressed and practical solutions are more in line than ever before. Many dissatisfied customers who complained did get bonus air miles applicable to another flight, but also positive solutions followed the debacle.

Finally, consider giving the company a second chance if they have followed through in their attempts to correct the problem. Thank the company for listening; give them another chance and maybe consider flying with Continental Airlines again.

photo credit: Oran Viriyincy

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Cheryl Hanna
Service Untitled
Cheryl Hanna is a successful real estate sales person in Florida and has used her customer service knowledge and experience to set her apart and gain a competitive edge in a very difficult market. Cheryl has been writing professionally since 1999 and writes for several blogs and online publications


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