Complain About an Employee Who Has Given Poor or Offensive Service | Letter-Writing Guide


Write this letter in a calm, controlled tone. Expressing too much emotion will weaken your position. Avoid insulting the employee, but accurately describe what he or she did or said that merits a complaint. Since your letter focuses on a single individual, avoid making generalizations about the company or organization.


1. Identify the employee in question, and state all the relevant facts concerning the case.

  • This morning, my wife rang for assistance. A full ten minutes passed before a nurse named Jane finally showed up, acting as if she had been put to great inconvenience. She was rude to my wife and did not help her back into bed. The incident disturbed both of us. I felt I should inform you.
  • As I was shopping in your store yesterday, I overheard two employees, Jake and Thomas, laughing and making obscene remarks about some of the customers in the store. I have appreciated your courteous service through the years and doubt that you would condone such behavior from your employees.
  • Recently, one of your representatives, John Doe, came over to my apartment to drop off some information I had requested. I became very upset at his persistent unwanted advances and asked him to leave my apartment.
  • I understand and appreciate your bank's policy on quick service. I was, however, not impressed with the abrupt way your teller, Jane Doe, served me this morning. After cashing a check at the window, I asked her if she would verify my savings balance. She told me with some exasperation to wait and then retrieved the information. She then called "Next, please," before I had a chance to look the statement over to see if I had any questions.
  • While your helper was spraying my lawn this morning, my cat slipped out of the house onto the lawn. Instead of stopping the spraying so I could retrieve the cat before it became contaminated with the insecticide, your employee deliberately sprayed my cat. I was very upset and feared that my cat might become ill from his malicious behavior. Enclosed is the bill for examination and treatment by our veterinarian.
  • against health regulations
  • am extremely dissatisfied with
  • am appalled that
  • as I was shopping in your store
  • considerable time passed before
  • disturbed me so much that
  • doubt that you would countenance such behavior
  • doubt that you would condone
  • doubt that you would approve of
  • expect better treatment from
  • expect professional behavior from
  • feel I should direct your attention to
  • feel that I should inform you
  • feel that you should know
  • have always appreciated your
  • have always been pleasant
  • have always been pleased with
  • merits a complaint
  • need to take corrective action
  • need to call your attention to
  • need to behave professionally
  • should not be allowed to
  • should be brought to your attention
  • the rude behavior of
  • think I should direct your attention to
  • this malicious behavior
  • was not happy with the way your
  • was most disappointed by
  • will not tolerate such behavior
  • wish to draw your attention to

2. Include any suggestions you may have about rectifying the situation.

  • Please remind Mr. Doe of the impropriety of making unwanted advances. If he ever approaches me again in a similar manner, I will press sexual harassment charges.
  • I trust you will speak to this nurse about the importance of prompt service as well as sensitivity in responding to patients' requests.
  • Perhaps your employees in the lumber department need a reminder that not everyone knows what a joist is. Please ask them to be more patient with clients who have questions.
  • While I wholeheartedly support your policy of quick service, I think the teller in question should be reminded that every customer deserves to have his or her question answered with courtesy.
  • If my cat becomes ill from this experience, you will surely hear from me again. Please cancel my contract for future sprayings.
  • a simple word of caution may be adequate
  • at your next training session
  • to avoid losing another customer
  • need to be more
  • client's questions need to be answered
  • to complete the tasks they are
  • every customer deserves
  • for the sake of future
  • if I may offer a suggestion
  • if I may make a recommendation
  • importance of prompt service
  • importance of professional conduct
  • importance of courtesy
  • personal attention should be enough to
  • please make it known that
  • please correct this situation
  • please do not ignore
  • speaking condescendingly is no way to
  • trust you will speak to
  • wholeheartedly support your policy of
  • will surely hear from me again
  • would like to recommend that you

3. Assure the reader of your willingness to cooperate if any action needs to be taken against the employee, and express your confidence that the reader will handle the situation appropriately.

  • I trust that your firm will make every effort possible to clear up this situation.
  • If you need me to testify concerning Dr. Doe's medical practices, I am willing to do so.
  • I am confident that you will inform Mrs. Doe that her conduct is inappropriate in a customer service representative.
  • I trust that with our next child, my wife will have a more pleasant stay in your facility.
  • I trust that you will ensure that such incidents do not occur again. I hope this letter will ultimately benefit you. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
  • I trust that if I shop in your store in the future, I will not overhear such comments again.
  • I would like to continue doing business with your firm, but not through Mr. Doe.
  • am confident that
  • am willing to
  • appreciate your responsiveness
  • appreciate your willingness to
  • as soon as possible
  • better for all of us
  • can assure you that
  • for further information
  • for your cooperation
  • for taking the time
  • have confidence in
  • in your ability to
  • in your knowledge and experience
  • kindly ensure that
  • please call me if
  • thank you in advance for
  • thank you for
  • that such incidents do not occur again
  • that you will take appropriate action
  • to cooperate with any
  • to clear up this situation
  • will handle this appropriately
  • would like to continue doing business with

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