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For the most part, I am positive person; I like to see the good in everything and make the best of it, even the gift of complaints.

While on vacation a few years ago, I stayed at an all-inclusive resort. I opted to book the lowest-category room with a garden view, knowing that I wouldn’t be spendingThe gift of complaints much time during my trip hanging out in there. Upon arrival, I found the “garden view” consisted of a dirt patch with two bushes. Given the tropical island that we were on, I had expected more from the garden view, but it was what I booked. The larger issue was that most of the furniture in the room was broken, and they gave me a room with 2 queen beds instead of the king I had requested. After all, I am a big guy. 😊  I called the front desk and was told someone would get back to me, but 40 minutes later and 2 calls out to them I still had not received a response.

Deciding to take matters into my own hands, I went to the front desk to speak with the person directly. Calmly, I told him about the issue of the bed and the broken furniture. After hearing me out, he ended up thanking me and changed my room. Let me say that that again…he thanked me!!! While he could not do anything about my view or even the bed based on the category of the room I had booked, he was unaware of the broken furniture. Ultimately, I had given him the opportunity to improve someone else’s experience, the gift of a complaint.

I began this post by saying that I am a positive person. To keep in theme with that, I do view most customer grievances as a gift. It sounds strange, but it’s true. We can learn not just from positive feedback, but also from complaints and negative feedback. Complaints are a gift because they allow us an opportunity to learn and correct.

Being a business owner, I am no stranger to complaints. At J2, we hear the person out and then act accordingly. There are times when they want to complain for the sake of complaining, but in most cases the complaint is a legitimate one. I’ve learned through experience that once the grievance is addressed, it helps us improve our processes while maintaining a favorable relationship. The gift of complaints results in us reaping the rewards of gaining a better understanding and correcting as needed.

Next time you receive a complaint, look at the positives that come from it, instead of the negative connotations usually associated with them. How will you learn from it? What will you change to make the experience better in the future?

I would close with “have a complaint this weekend”, but in these times do we really need that reminder?  😊

“Opportunity lies in the place where the complaints are.”-Jack Ma

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