Seeing Complaints As Opportunities

It seems like complaining has replaced Baseball as America’s Pastime. Whether it is politics, the economy, the restaurant we ate at last night, or the person who took our parking spot, there is always something or someone to complain about. In the past you could only complain to people in reach of your voice, but social media outlets now give additional places for people to vent frustrations.

Complaints highlight the gap between people’s expectations and reality. Within every complaint there are two very important pieces of information that you should pay attention to.

Every complaint reveals a person’s expectation and how that expectation was not met

Marketing companies spend millions of dollars trying to figure out what consumers want, when all you really need to do to find out is to look at your Facebook timeline or Twitter feed. Those are both full of people saying exactly what they want, though it may be disguised as a complaint.

Every complaint has a person or entity that is being complained about

This is your competition, or the current reality that you will replace.

Start thinking of complaints as opportunities. If you hear someone complaining about the poor service at the restaurant they went to last night. Translate that in your mind to “if someone started a restaurant with good service, I would quit going to restaurant x, and go to the new restaurant instead”.

Every day you hear dozens of complaints. Instead of joining in, or being discouraged, think of those complaints as opportunities. When you hear an opportunity that you can provide a solution to, do it!


Josh Roberts

Josh grew up in Tyler and after graduating from Baylor with a degree in financial planning, moved back to Tyler to pursue a master’s degree in accounting at UT Tyler and a career in financial planning. Josh holds the Certified Financial Planner designation and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the state of Texas.
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