Complaints are part of the landscape for any business. Taking complaints seriously and establishing a good complaint handling procedure is one of the most effective ways of dealing with local concerns. Implementing a simple, well-designed procedure demonstrates a willingness to take community members and their issues seriously. A good process can play a major part in building better relationships with local communities, will help with the early identification and resolution of concerns and will reduce the potential for unanswered questions to escalate into something more serious.
SLO Guide to Community Complaints
Complaints are part of the landscape for any business, and especially so for anyone operating close to communities. Although a complaint, by its very nature, requires dealing with dissatisfied and often unhappy people, taking complaints seriously and establishing a good complaints handling procedure is one of the most effective ways you can deal with local concerns. A well implemented procedure demonstrates a willingness to take community members and their issues seriously and has a major part to play in building better relationships with your local communities. It will also enable you to identify and resolve issues and concerns early which in turn will reduce the potential for complaints to escalate into litigation, protests, security incidents, or regulatory challenges. It will also bring your behaviour in to line with current international standards and broader societal expectations. While a good complaint handing process is an essential first step, your ultimate aim needs be making changes to the way you operate so that you avoid actions that lead to complaints.
- IFC Grievance Mechanisms Good Practice Guide
Having a way to address community concerns and complaints is essential if you're serious about building and maintaining a good relationship with your local communities and this guidance from the IFC is as relevant and useful today as it was when it was published in 2009.