The Art of the Complaint Letter
The following is a genuine complaint letter to a certain retailer. Actually it was Yuriko who was on the receiving end of clerkly rudeness, but I'm the designated complaint-letter writer in the family. Names and other details changed.
ATTN: Rufus T. Firefly, Executive Vice President, Behemoth Retail Corp.
November 27, 2007
Dear Mr. Firefly,
On the evening of November 26, 2007, I went shopping at the Behemoth store in Schaumburg, Ill., and experienced rude treatment from one of your checkout clerks.
Her name was Dana. I don’t know her last name, but she did ring me up at register X, transaction no. Y that evening.
I wanted to use a gift card I had acquired from Behemoth some time earlier to pay for part of my purchase. It had a $5 balance, and neither I nor anyone else in my family had used it. Dana informed me, however, that the balance was zero. I told her that was not the case, at which time she brusquely told me I was wrong, implying that I was trying to get something for nothing. Her only suggestion after that was to call the number on the back of the card.
Probably at that point I should have asked for the store manager, but I was angry, and wanted to leave, so I did, after purchasing more than $60 worth of items from your store, without the gift-card discount I was entitled to.
About an hour later, I called the number on the card, and the automated system told me the card still was worth $5. Dana was mistaken, and displayed a “not my problem” attitude. The card number is X-X-X-X-238.
Five dollars is a small amount. The amount of good will Dana cost your store and your brand is considerably more.