How to effectively complain at work - Filling a complaint at work effectively can be tricky and you don’t want to be labelled as someone who is constantly in complain mode, bullied out of ever saying what you feel or just dealing with injustice. Be smart and professional and you should be able to pull it off.
Here is the full article as originally published on the Random Forest here: How to effectively complain at work.
How to effectively complain at work
Probably the biggest reason people don’t file just claims in the work place is that they are in a culture that bullies people not to. This kind of environment is common and helps a boss establish a strong hold on the people they treat as ‘beneath them’ with minions who dish out the bullying and seriously terrible behaviors all around. It may only be subtle but it creates a terrible work environment worthy of complaint in itself.
Complainers often get labelled and mocked as if they ‘can’t take it’ or are just a whinging child in the hard life but the fact is you go to work to earn a salary. You don’t deserve to be trodden on, take crap that is outside of your duties or be stressed for no reason. Any complaint or misconduct is worthy of a genuine complaint and needs to be fixed and hopefully if you handle the situation correctly you can rise above the bullying and get some effective action against your issues.
So how do you do it?
It all starts with some organisation. You need to be clear on every step and follow official guidelines.
Start recording everything – Keep a diary of events related to the complaint. Write down dates, times and who is involved.
Find out your companies official procedure – All corporates will have a handbook with official procedures. Ask your boss for a copy if it’s not accessible and if they refuse go to human resources and ask them, if they refuse find someone above or unrelated and ask them. At this stage you are not complaining so don’t do so, just say you want to be clear on company policy regarding certain scenarios.
Don’t rise to anything – You may be seen as plotting something by walking around professional and writing stuff down, don’t rise to any taunts or people trying to pry into your business. Keep being professional and keep doing your job.
Schedule a meeting with your boss about the issues – Once you have enough evidence of everything ask to meet with your boss. If the boss is part of the issue then be careful here and I would audio record and take written notes of the meeting, of course inform the boss of the recording and put the recorder (phone, Dictaphone whatever) in plain sight.
Next up, follow the official procedures to go higher – You may find your issues actually being resolved by now but in many cases they may have gotten worse because of the meetings you have had with your boss. Keep recording incidents in your diary and building up a case file and then follow official procedures to climb further up the chain. By now you will have a good solid case and the company should be in a position to try to deal with your concerns. You may keep finding yourself having to go higher and higher until you are above the terrible culture that caused your complaints in the first place but it will give you purpose at work. Just don’t let it consume you and keep on doing your job as well as you can.
Good luck, don’t give up or shut up and fight for your right to a stress free comfortable work life.
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