Conversation Agent - Valeria Maltoni - How to Complain Effectively

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This got me thinking about why people complain in the first place, and what it might suggest about the often uneasy relationship between a business and its customers.

If a customer sees complaining as a way to blow off steam, or to achieve some transactional objective like a refund or make-good, then that has potentially profound implications for the business. Constructive criticism is driven, at least in part, by a desire for improvement. It implies that you actually care enough about the business to make the effort. And you believe the business actually cares enough to engage.

Far too often, that implicit relationship -- a business seeking to deliver value, and a customer finding it -- simply doesn't exist. If Company A doesn't deliver something that provides unique value, then why waste the effort? Next time I'll try Company B.

Unless, of course, the company is an airline and there's only one way out of town.

@Leslie - glad you found the post helpful. Thank you for sharing it.

@Christa - and you know what? If we think about it, there are people whose efforts we don't recognize enough.

@Ron - this is a good insight, that people who complain rarely are more thoughtful about how they do it. Interesting observation about companies that make it difficult to communicate praise. It's like an all around lack of care or concern...

Outstanding post!

I'm not sure why, but people who complain infrequently seem to complain more effectively. And people who complain constantly - and nastily - actually encourage bad behavior.

I agree that people should acknowledge good customer service, but I have found that companies that make it difficult to communicate problems usually also make it difficult to communicate praise.

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