Complaints can arise at any time, and it is crucial that public sector workers are prepared to deal with them quickly and effectively to avoid escalations, increase trust and improve service. Being prepared to listen, respond, and learn from complaints, wherever and whenever they arise will help to ensure your organisation maintains a reputation of excellent duty of care.

This Successfully Resolving Verbal Complaints course will not only help you build communication and mediation skills but will also help you create a culture where complaints are seen as opportunities to improve your organisation. Through interactive workshops you will acquire the confidence to handle difficult and emotional conversations over the phone and face-to-face.

09.15 - 09.45


09.45 - 10:00

Trainer's Welcome and Clarification of Learning Objectives

10.00 - 10.30

Understanding Verbal Complaints in the Public Sector

  • Public perception of complaint responses in the public sector
  • Why it’s important to handle verbal complaints effectively
  • Defining and identifying complaints
  • Understanding the 4 types on complainant
10.30 - 11.00

Morning Break

11.00 - 12.30

Verbal Complaints Best Practice

  • Discussion on complaints handling, what was a positive experience you had, what was a negative?
  • Frontline staff as key players
  • Gathering all the relevant information
  • Finding the appropriate resolution
  • What to do when you don’t have the answer
  • Handling complex and high-risk complaints
  • The importance of following up
12.30 - 13.30


13.30 - 14.45

Handling Difficult Conversations

  • Active listening and the importance of body language
  • Remaining calm and in control
  • It’s not always what you say, it’s how say it – understanding the importance of tone in communication
  • Empathy and Apology
  • Role play – practice handling different types of complainants
14.45 - 15.00

Afternoon Break

15.00 - 16.00

Complaints as Opportunity

  • Understanding the benefits of keeping detailed records of complaints
  • Reducing the cause for complaints
  • Changing the culture around complaints
  • Why compensation isn’t always enough – using complaints to improve service provision
16.00 - 16.15

Feedback, Evaluation & Close

Central London