Get Your Complaint Solved: Quick Beats Nice

Some of the tactics we recommend to consumers battling large and/or indifferent business are faster rather than nicer, and with good reason.

Emailblasting the entire executive team, using backdoor phone numbers to reach the executive customer service team, passing out complaint flyers in front of their store, making a YouTube complaint video… don’t those sound a little “unfair.”

Shouldn’t you just take a number and stand in line? Write a letter and wait 6-8 weeks before sending a followup? Pitch a case to the Better Business Bureau? Write a letter to the local newspaper?

Those methods can work, and you should always give the company at least one shot through the established channels first, but they won’t necessarily get things done quickly.

This is not to say you should be rude. If you scream, threaten, or insult, you lose. You’ve just given them permission to ignore you, to write you off as a kookoo. If anything, be extra-polite.

Time is money, but this isn’t simply a matter of impatience. Compensation is the only thing you should be after. You want to get exactly what you paid for. Not extortion, not an apology, not for them to tuck you in at night and give you a goodnight kiss. Figure out what your hourly wage is worth, remembering that free time is worth more than on-the-clock time. If the value of the time you’re spending on the issue exceeds the value of what you’re seeking, give up. Take your business elsewhere. Otherwise, you’re being irrational.

Businesses know that humans have a least somewhat of an economist inside them and that’s why they put up hurdles when you try to get complaints resolved. You have to fax in multiple documents, you have to wait for them to call you back, you have to put a green cup on your head and spin around three times reciting the lyrics to “I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General.”

This is why it’s so important to get your problem solved quickly, and do that, you’re gonna have to play a little hardball. Learn how to do so by reading, “The Ultimate Consumerist Guide To Fighting Back.”

(Photo: Getty)