How To Turn Complaints Into Opportunities


Goal: Make sure they leave happy!

More mistakes will occur in the next few weeks than what usually happen in several months.

How your team handles these mistakes – or “opportunities” – will make the difference in THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS of repeat business (and the feedback you receive on social media sites).

If you have not posted a single explanation to all staff (old and new) of how to deal with unhappy guests, YOU NEED TO.

Keep it simple. Here is an example:

Turning a Complaint Into an Opportunity

  1. Acknowledge the complaint
    “I understand that your steak is undercooked…”
  2. Sincerely Apologize
    “I am truly sorry this happened to you…”
  3. Take Action to Please Your Guest
    “I will take care of this immediately…”
  4. Thank Them for the Chance to Make It Right
    “Thank you for the opportunity to make this right for you…”
  5. Alert the manager on duty
    NOTICE that you contact a manager AFTER you have the solution in play (unless it is a SERIOUS issue). Your manager will touch the table before they leave.

Nothing says holidays like a cheese log
The above may seem like common sense, but I can assure you that it is not common practice at most restaurants and bars.

Remember, the key to an apology is SINCERITY- so make sure you always mean it!

Good luck and have a wonderful holiday,
Sean Finter