So you’ve exhausted the normal customer service routes and want to shoot your complaint to the top, but you don’t know how to reach that CEO or executive. Our resident contact info bloodhound, Dyan Flores, put together the tools and tricks she uses to sniff out executive customer service information.
First, check the company website. Many companies will have a list of their high-ranking executives, and if you’re lucky they might even include their contact info too.
If the company is publicly traded, enter the company name into Google Finance. The current CEO should be listed under the bottom right area called Management. If the company isn’t on the stock market, Google the term “CEO” and the company’s name. This usually will yield news stories that’ll mention who the CEO of the company is. Make sure you aren’t looking at outdated stories.
Once you have the CEO’s name, do a Google search that consists of his/her name, the term “CEO”, and the term “email” or “phone number”. Many times this will either bring up listings from business directories that may have the contact info you need, or it might also bring up company information that has the contact info for the CEO included.
If these basic searches fail, then it’s time to get a little sneaky:
If there is a phone number listed on the company website, call and ask for the office of *insert name of CEO here*.
Can’t hurt to try, right? Google Finance is again a great resource for finding the phone number for the corporate headquarters.
If you call after business hours, sometimes the company will have an automated directory that you might be able to navigate to get through to leave the CEO a message.
If you call and reach an operator, using a line like, “I’m updating my boss’ contact list and I wanted to make sure I had the most current information for so-and-so,” can get you far. Sure, it’s a little dishonest, but it’s a pretty reliable tactic.
Try finding an email address that shows the format of the company’s email addresses. i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org. Often times you’ll find this on press releases where company publicists will list their contact info. Try fitting the CEO’s name into that email format and sending off an email to them. Sometimes companies will change the format of their executive’s email addresses, but more often than not, this will work.
With a little Googling, persistence and maybe even some social engineering, you can increase the odds that your problem will land in his lap, or at least in the hands of his executive customer service team. — DYAN FLORES