As a business owner, you are committed to providing high-quality service and when customers complain, it’s going to sting a bit. So how do you handle dealing with customer complaints in a way that is productive for you and your business? Shake it off!

To quote one of my favorite movies (You’ve Got Mail!), it’s not personal, it’s business.

It’s not possible to please everybody, so there will be a small handful of customers who will tell you that your team didn’t do a good job. You’ve got to develop a thick skin, because it’s not personal, it’s business. You are not a failure if you get a complaint.

Even if 99.9% of customers are happy with our service, we tend to focus on the 0.01% of people who aren’t happy instead of feeling good about the 99.9% who say we do an amazing job. We focus on the negative when we take things personally.

You have to realize that everything is a numbers game. If you clean more houses, you’re going to get more complaints. You might see 1 complaint for every 10 houses you clean. My advice? Get over it, and move on.

Here’s another way to look at complaints: every piece of negative feedback is a gift, not a failure. You can learn from the feedback and determine what went wrong and what could have been cleaned better. If you find that the customer was just off their rocker and nothing was wrong with the clean, there’s no reason to be upset—that customer is just unreasonable. But if there was a bit of truth in each complaint, take that feedback as a gift and realize that this will help you not make the same mistake in the future.

When you speak with the unhappy client, do not defend your team’s work or make excuses for why you disappointed them. Don’t try to convince them that they are wrong. Take the high road, say “I’m so sorry you were disappointed. Can we come back this afternoon and correct it for you?”

I’m all about eating crow. Apologize, offer to fix it quickly, and swallow your pride. You never know what response you may get.

Most of your customers think you’re awesome. so quit focusing on the negative, and see what you can do to make it right.

Bonus tip: to de-stress, find a song you really like, play it loud, and dance for a few minutes. Literally shake it off. Then move on. Don’t let complaints spoil the joy of your business.

Need more tips on training? Check out my Cleaning Business Fundamentals Course. Being an entrepreneur can be a lonely business, and very few people can guess their way to success in this business—in fact most people don’t. I highly recommend that you join my 16 week Cleaning Business Fundamentals course to get training, strategy, and weekly answers to your burning questions. For a free 30 minute consultation to discuss whether my course is a good fit for you, simply fill out my owner’s survey and I’ll be in touch to set up a time to talk.