6. Complaining by phone or in person
It's worth having an initial discussion before progressing to a formal complaint. Whether you're just discussing the problem or making a formal complaint, always prepare first. Be clear about what the issue is, when it happened and how you would like it resolved.
Tips on how to discuss a problem
- Talk to the right person. The person you speak to needs to have the ability to resolve the issue, eg a store manager, business owner or supervisor.
- Focus on talking about the problem with the product or service, rather than taking issue with a person.
- Stay calm and reasonable. Explain the problem in detail and provide any evidence you may have.
- Tell them what outcome you want.
- Expect questions. A store or service provider may ask you for more details.
- Ask to speak with someone else if you’re not happy with the way the conversation is going. It’s okay to walk away and come back later, or to follow up in writing.
- Listen to their response. Ask for time to consider it if you need to.
If you’re not comfortable talking to the store or service provider, take a friend or family member for support.
People who are deaf, hard of hearing, speech-impaired or deafblind can connect with businesses by using the New Zealand Relay Service. A relay assistant can help arrange communication with others over the phone. The service is free.
New Zealand Relay Service(external link)