You know your people and some of them are always complaining. They gripe about the temperature in the room. They gripe about the work they’re assigned. They gripe about everything you tell them. You’ve heard these same complaints over and over again.
These types of people work in every company. They get their kicks from complaining. Sometimes they do have legitimate complaints, of course, so you can’t just automatically ignore them. You have to listen – and that can be time-consuming and annoying.
One way to minimize this kind of griping is to pay more attention to the people who complain. The reason for the complaints is often their desire to be the center of attention. By talking to them, asking their opinions, and praising their good work, you satisfy their need for attention and give them less reason to gripe.
Follow these 4 steps to find out what’s going on:
1. Listen. Even if a complaint seems to be unfounded, in the mind of the complainant it’s a serious matter.
2. Investigate. Take nothing for granted. Look at the record, and talk to others who know about the situation.
3. Report back. If the gripe is unfounded, explain your reasoning to the complainant. If it is substantiated, explain what you will do to correct it.
4. Take action. Do what must be done to correct the problem.