How using more human language and psychology stops complaints escalating

The way you respond to complaints is crucial. Sound too corporate and they can escalate and become impossible to fix. Try to dismiss them and they can keep bouncing back. The most effective way to resolve them is to sound human, open and sincere.

After this virtual training course Team Leaders, Managers and Complaint Handlers will be able to write better complaint responses – whether you use standard letters, standard paragraphs or just start from scratch each time..

Working – live – on your own material

We’ll work – live – on improving your own customer-facing material too. Send an example of your contact centre’s complaint responses you’re happy to share and we’ll work on a couple of examples from the group and show you how to improve them in real time.


You’ll understand the huge impact that more human written communication has and the role it can play in reducing complaints and building back relationships with your customers.

We’ll get you and your team writing faster, better and with confidence.

Topics we’ll cover

  • Tone of voice – sounding more human to reduce escalations and resolve complaints more effectively
  • Why sounding ‘professional’ can be the wrong thing to do
  • Communicating with your audience with empathy and respect
  • Having more impact by writing less
  • Saying ‘no’ nicely
  • Content – what to say and what you don’t need to say
  • Structure and formatting
  • How people form an opinion of you from your comms – and how to stop them getting the wrong one
  • Buzzword Bingo – getting rid of common phrases that don’t work
  • Passive and active voice and how to use them
  • Plain English and why it’s OK, but only just a start
  • Writing to help customers understand – not make yourself look good


3-hour online sessions, using Zoom.

What delegates say

“The information was helpful and informative, as was the presentation and workbook. Really enjoyed the full session. The interaction was also great throughout.”

“I thought that Mike did an excellent job of keeping us all engaged, he ran at a great pace and also had the right tone and manner, he was also very open and honest ”

About the trainer

Mark McArthur-Christie

When was the last time you thought about your everyday emails to customers, the tone of your complaint responses, standard paragraphs or even how your statements are written?  What would happen if you started treating them like powerful customer experience tools that could boost satisfaction and first contact resolution as well as reducing complaints and queries?

As an ex-adman working in customer experience, Mark realised the same behavioural psychology tools and techniques that can sell a product or a service can help you make customers more loyal, make complaints disappear, stop unwanted query calls, and even deliver bad news without getting aggressive feedback.

He’s been helping organisations like The National Trust, The Electoral Commission, Aston Martin and Nando’s, amongst others, do exactly that since 2002.  They’ve seen complaint numbers halve, first contact resolution double and customers become more loyal.

Mark now runs The Think Human Consultancy, a customer experience business specialising in helping you get the most out of your everyday, operational comms.  As well as being a consultant and trainer, he’s also a published Oxford University Press author, speaker, and columnist.

Upcoming Dates

Pick a date below and fill in the booking form to reserve your place and places for colleagues. We will raise an invoice, so if you need to provide a purchase order number, please do so in the form or email it to

Better Complaint Responses
Date: Thu 6 Oct 2022
Where: Online

Date: Tue 19 Jul 2022
Where: Online

Date: Thu 20 Oct 2022
Where: Online

Who is it for?

Contact Centre Managers, Team Managers, Complaint Handlers, and anyone who responds to complaints in a contact centre.

Why should you go?

To make your complaint responses more effective, reduce escalations and sound more human.

How much is it?

CCMA members: £299*

Non-members: £349*

*excludes VAT

Additional discounts available for group bookings