This is the first in our series of articles aimed at helping consumers to empower themselves. We will begin by discussing that very important first step in the communication cycle: the complaint email.
So you have been wronged and now you’re mad. We get it. You want someone to know and you want something done about it.
Before you fire off that angry email or write that letter, take a second to breathe. Here are a few tips to help you achieve the desired results.
Make sure that you have the facts straight and your complaint is legitimate.
Type your letter in Word if possible. Use a spellchecker or have someone proofread your letter. If it is handwritten, make sure it is neat and easy to read.
Start your letter with something positive in order to soften the blow of your complaint so that the company or person will be more willing to work with you. For example, if writing to complain about a faulty product that you purchased, you might begin, ‘I have been a loyal customer of your store for many years.’ Mention some of the positive aspects of the company or organisation, such as the overall quality of the products or services, the low prices, the excellent customer service and so forth.
Open the next paragraph with a sentence that begins to allude to the problem. For instance, you might write, “It is understandable that companies that offer a wide variety of electronic products would occasionally come across a faulty piece of merchandise.” Then, in the next sentence, state your complaint. (Again, if you intend to do more than just complain and want the problem to be solved, it is best to remain professional and courteous. Do not sound accusatory or demanding.) After clearly stating your complaint, indicate what you would like to have done to rectify the situation, if anything. You may want to mention, also, the actions you will take if your complaint is not answered or the problem is not solved.
As you close your letter, express confidence that your complaint will be taken care of. Finally, thank the company (or person you are talking to) for handling your complaint.
We hope this helps. Any feedback is appreciated.
Joe Ruzvidzo is the founder of Zimbabwe’s customer experience blog: www.consumerizim.com. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or WhatsApp 0772 881 704 to share your experience today.