© 2011 Grant William Veitch Harrold The Royal Butler. All Rights Reserved. 

Complaining Etiquette



One thing we British are experts in is of course complaining. We are known the world over for voicing our anger or upset and why should we not do this? If we are offered bad service in a restaurant should we not voice our upset? If someone causes you to almost crash your car into theirs have you not got the right to show your anger? Well, of course we have the right to do this within reason, but if I may suggest there is delicate and subtle way to complain. Now this is not an excuse but remember even if you think your having a bad day the other person may be having a far worse day, week or even year so lets always bear this in mind. 


So what kind of things should we not complain about? Well, ask yourself would you complain if you have an excellent meal at a restaurant and then the waiter gives you the wrong bill - do you get annoyed and show anger to the waiter and restaurant or do you show understanding and patience. Ideally I would hope you can show understanding and patience. Understanding that these things can happen and patience to allow the waiter to sort this bill out. In doing the latter you keep the evening as a pleasant experience instead of a scene from you worst horror movie. 


If you are unfortunately in an accident or somebody accidentally bumps into your car do you get out and threaten him/her to a WWF Championship or do you remain calm composed and keep your dignity. All you Hulk Hogan fans lets stick to the latter. Remember when something awful like this happens you will both be in shock and may say and do things you will later regret. Therefore remain calm and composed and check you and other passenger are well then check the passengers in the car are all well and safe. Politely exchange details and show concern for the well being of others. Indeed sadly we live in a time where we cannot accept responsibility or apologies without taking on fault, therefore show concern and care for them and your passengers first and foremost. When we all know we will live to see another day we can pass on the details to our wonderful insurance companies to sort out the rest. 


What I am trying to say is rather than being rude, unreasonable and inconsiderate to others please take a moment to think about them and their situation as they are possibly trying to do the best they can in a difficult situation. As Kurt Cobain said “I really haven't had that exciting of a life. There are a lot of things I wish I would have done, instead of just sitting around and complaining about having a boring life. So I pretty much like to make it up. I'd rather tell a story about somebody else.”


So a few of my personal pointers 


1. Remember to treat others as you wish to be treated.

2. Consider someone else's situation.

3. Always remain calm composed and act with the decorum of the Lady or Gentleman

4. Rather than complain try to assist and solve the problem 

5. Always listen to what the other person is saying without interrupting

6. When all else fails take yourself to a darkened and sound proof room for 12hrs.