Complaint handling skills

Complaint handling skills

Complaint handling skills training course

Can include any or all of the following complaint handling forms: Telephone, email. face to face and online

“Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business”

Hilary ‘Zig’ Ziglar, motivational speaker and former salesman

Brilliant customer complaint handling training course

Course overview

This highly practical one-day workshop will ensure that customers’ comments, concerns and complaints are dealt with appropriately. Good complaint handling matters because it is an important way of ensuring that customers receive the service they are entitled to expect. Complaints are a valuable source of feedback for them and they provide an audit trail and can be an early warning of failures in service delivery.

The workshop looks at three main areas:

  • How to encourage, capture and prompt customer feedback formally and informally
  • The correct way to deal with customer complaints – in person, by phone and in writing – to resolve the issue and maintain goodwill
  • Presenting feedback internally, reviewing and implementing and changes

Customer feedback or a complaint is a gift!

The new way of thinking is that feedback, comments or a complaint is a very important piece of feedback and it should be treated as such by your company.

Background to complaint handling skills

The fact is everyone has the right to expect a good service from your business and to have things put right if they go wrong or fall below their expectation. Customers should also be given the right, and even encouragement, to comment, give feedback and complain when things do go wrong or right as well!

When handled well, complaints provide an opportunity to improve your service, systems and reputation.

Whilst there is often a balance between responding appropriately to complaints and acting proportionately within available resources, prompt and efficient complaint handling can save time and money by preventing a complaint from escalating unnecessarily or mistakes being repeated.

Learning from complaints can reduce the number of complaints in the future. Good complaint handling should be led by managers and team leaders and focused on positive outcomes for both you and the customer, fair and proportionate, and sensitive to complainants’ needs.

Training objectives

Participants of this workshop will learn the skills to manage the process, making feedback handling clear and straightforward, and readily accessible to customers.

Principles of complaint handling skills training course includes

  1. Getting it right first time and having a plan B for when you don’t
  2. Being customer focused at all levels and training people in how to respond to feedback and complaints
  3. Being open and accountable and encouraging ownership of issues
  4. Acting fairly and proportionately whilst still being flexible
  5. Putting things right – fast, fully and with applied common sense
  6. Seeking continuous improvement – making changes to prevent or avoid future problems


All customer-facing staff, whether they are dealing with internal or external customers.

The course is suitable for all sectors – large and small organisations, private and public sector, not for profit, UK and international.


The training is very practical and objective. Very clear and specific skills, models and techniques are covered. The focus is on improving things that are already working, not going over old ground. Participants will discuss and plan new approaches to real-life examples taken from their own situations.

Each element of the course includes:

  • High-quality training presentation
  • Group exercises and team activities
  • High degree of participation and interaction

The course includes regular discussion, planning and other practical exercises to develop and practice the skills and methods presented. Presentation and exercises can be tailored to specific situations from participants’ work. The style is up-beat and motivational.

Special features

The course can be tailored according to organisational need or the skill level of the participants.

Workshop preparation

Before running this workshop, time will be taken to understand and define key objectives together with examples of feedback, comments and complaint handling situations. These will be used as case studies and practice sessions during the day.

This will also have an influence on the final outline and learning objectives.

Comments or questions are welcome.

Complaint handling skills training course – course outline


1 The importance of customer feedback, comments, complaints and how to spot and encourage feedback

2 The psychology of complaint handling – why people comment and complain

3 Common feedback, comments and complaints and what they are telling us about our business

4 The correct structure for dealing with feedback, comments and complaints

5 Dealing with customer feedback (with role-play / practice)

  • Face to face
  • On the telephone
  • In writing
  • Escalation issues
  • Staying within the law

6 Dealing with ‘difficult’ customer situations and calming upset customers

7 Encouraging positive feedback

8 Making changes in your business

9 Pulling it all together