‘Sweet dreams are made of cheese’ – not sung by Annie Lennox
It’s one of the world’s greatest misheard lyrics and possibly the only one mentioning cheese, but then there are other misheard gems such as:
- ‘We built this city on sausage rolls’ – Starship
- ‘It doesn’t make a difference if we’re naked or not’ – Bon Jovi
- And the classic ‘I can see Deirdre now Lorraine is gone’ – Johnny Nash
I’m sorry, what did you say?
I wonder how many times each day things are misheard, misunderstood and misconstrued?
I also wonder how often we deal with it badly. Emotions take over, anger swells and a strange twitch develops in one of our eyelids.
Think about it for a minute – when was the last time you went out for food and the order was wrong?
It happens to me pretty much every time I use a McDonald’s drive-thru or when I take my wife out for a meal (if a dish is going to come out barely warm, it will be her dish).
How do you deal with that? Nobody likes to eat lukewarm food, and if my wife sends hers back I can’t just sit there and eat mine.
Personally, I would ask the waiter to send them both back and order another drink while we wait.
But some people don’t like confrontation or aren’t confident in speaking up, so they won’t say a word. Then there are others who get quite angry at the staff. But you’d be surprised at how many people say nothing at the time, but then take to social media later on.
It’s relatively easy for us to complain, but it’s even easier to complain anonymously.
Despite the fact that there’s a very high chance we would see a more positive reaction to dealing with a problem at the time, we would still rather hammer away on the keyboard.
The new world order is here. Nearly everything is online. We search for services/businesses online, we book them online and we complain online!
A 2015 report by the Institute of Customer Service suggested one in four customers take to social media to complain. It’s not all doom and gloom though, as more than a third of us use social media to give positive feedback to businesses.
So how should we deal with a mistake and how should we complain? There actually is a guide to complaining effectively!
Basically, follow these guidelines…
- Don’t lose your temper
- Be polite
- Be clear about what’s wrong and how you would like it resolved
- Give them a chance to resolve it
- If you’ve exhausted your local options then escalate the matter (email, letter, direct via social media) to the customer service team
- The main thing is to give the business a chance to put it right
Businesses should see a complaint as an opportunity to rectify an oversight on their part; to get better by learning.
We should never feel that we can’t complain or bring an error to the attention of staff or business.
Which brings me back to misheard lyrics. I’ll just leave this here…