Most of the people who work in the restaurant as a waiter or waitresses, know how easily mistakes are made. Errors happen on a daily bases and can vary from small mistakes to harmful incidents. Problem-solving is a science itself with plenty of stakeholders considerations: It may not cost too much money, but bad word-to-mouth is also not wanted. Either way, guests should be motivated to complain because in the end, it is only feedback on which can be improved (Willott, n.d.).
It is generally know customers do not show their complaints, mostly driven by politeness. This can cause unsatisfaction which remains unsolved after the customers left the restaurant. It is better to ask the guests for feedback rather than let them tell their friends and family about the bad experience. There are different tricks to motivate customers to complain. Van Looy, van Gemmel and Dierdonck (2003) researched that if guests know how to complain, they are more ...view middle of the document...
and Boo S. (Kim & Boo, 2011) regarding complaint-handling shows that customers who experienced a bad complaint-handling, the threshold for dissatisfaction of service next time, will be even lower which means the next visit they will be dissatisfied even earlier. Other research shows there is positive relation between complaint-seeking and profit (Willott, n.d.) and losing customers. There are many factors that influences the decisions to complain: perceptions of distributive, procedural, and interactional justice derived from an error in the service actually have positive impact on the satisfaction of the customer (Kim & Boo, 2011). It seems clear that complaints are of good influence on the company. A Belgium company also had this thought, and sent out a ‘complaint card’ to all its customers (Looy et al., 2003).
However, demanding complaints too explicitly may provoke dissatisfaction which would not be there if there was not asked for (Looy et al., 2003). Asking too much for negative feedback should be avoided for one simple reason. If the customer is more or less pushed to complain about minor problems, it is also expected that every of these problems are resolved the next visit, which is impossible. If the outcome of the complaint is positive it causes satisfaction, but if the outcome is negative (minor problem not solved) it causes even more dissatisfaction. This phenomenon is also known as the frustration-effect.
It can be concluded that complaint handling should be encouraged. Customers often keep their complain a secret and share it with other except for the employees. Which is a pity, because handling complaints good results in more satisfaction for the guest. Besides that, complaints are free feedback, you find out what customers find really important and lose fewer customers.
Kim, J. & Boo, S. (2011). Influencing Factors on Customers’ Intention to Complain in a Franchise
Restaurant. Journal of Hospitality Marketing & Management, 20, 217-237.
Van Looy, B., Gemmel, P. & van Dierdonck, R. (2003). Services Management: An Integrated Approach.
Harlow, England: Pearson Education Limited.
Willott, L. (n.d.). Why you should encourage customers to complain? Retrieved from