If you currently do not view customer complaints as a valuable opportunity, you are ignoring a very effective strategic tool for success. In more than 35 years of professional experience in marketing, I can assure you that the effective handling of complaints and a good service recovery strategy are very valuable marketing opportunities. The sad news here is that many businesses simply do not accept this and squander many opportunities to grow their business.

Perhaps businesses do not see the opportunities because complaining does not have a positive meaning. Complaints are associated with annoyance, displeasure, frustration, unhappiness and son on. How ironic then is it to suggest that complaints are an important vehicle for our own clients and customers to tell us how to run our businesses and organizations. I suggest a way to view complaints is to look at the complaints received and then develop and implement an effective means of managing complaints to produce positive outcomes for the customer and your business.

I wanted to share with you what I would suggest you do to handle complaints with class. Here are 10 things to do to manage complaints in a classy manner.

1. First of all, say thank you to the customer.

2. Express your personal appreciation for them sharing their complaint with you.

3. Apologize to the customer for the error, mistake or incident.

4. Make a personal commitment to do something immediately to address the complaint.

5. Ask the person making the complaint to please share information with you about the problem.

6. Take some immediate action to address the complaint and follow-up with required additional actions.

7. Ask the customer about their satisfaction level regarding your handling of their complaint and find out if you can do anything else.

8. Develop and implement a plan to prevent the same problem or concern from happening again.

9. Contact the person making the complaint to confirm the customer's complaint has been resolved satisfactorily. One of the most effective ways of doing this is by a phone call.

10. Write a thank you note to the person for bringing the problem or concern to your attention and for the opportunity to resolve their issue.

In my opinion, if you follow this class approach, you will see many more clients and customers returning to do business with you. If you would like to learn more about handling complaints with class, please contact Glenn Ebersole through his website at www.businesscoach4u.com or by email at jgecoach@aol.com

Author's Bio: 

J. Glenn Ebersole, Jr. is a multi-faceted professional, who is recognized as a visionary, guide and facilitator in the fields of business coaching, marketing, public relations, management, strategic planning and engineering. Glenn is the Founder and Chief Executive of two Lancaster, PA based consulting practices: The Renaissance Group, a creative marketing, public relations, strategic planning and business development consulting firm and J. G. Ebersole Associates, an independent professional engineering, marketing, and management consulting firm. He is a Certified Facilitator and serves as a business coach and a strategic planning facilitator and consultant to a diverse list of clients. Glenn is also the author of a monthly newsletter, “Glenn’s Guiding Lines – Thoughts From Your Strategic Thinking Business Coach” and has published more than 275 articles on business.