Discussions

Handling negative feedback that included letter w/staff name

Posted by Anonymous-460 @anonymous-460, Oct 12, 2011

I know there are other threads about how people have handled negative feedback online, but a recent blog posted added a new twist for us. The blog entry is a complaint about a standard billing/collections procedure. In the post, our hospital is named and the circumstances are described (second hand … as the writer says it’s not a personal account but someone he/she knows well). What is new here, to us, is that the post includes a scanned letter from us (with the recipient’s name and address removed) but with our staff person’s name and extention (as the sender of the letter) still visible. How would you handle? Thanks.

I don’t think it’s ideal to have the employee’s name and extension appear online, but if this is the person who addresses these types of complaints, I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing. I would not request that the staff information be removed, but I would place a comment on the blog addressing the complaint.

I guess my response would depend on a lot of different things. Is it a primary responsibility of the staff member to handle these sort of complaints? Do you believe the staff member handled the complaint properly? Is the staff member getting excessive calls, or getting harassed because of the information being placed online?

As a person who regularly hands out my card to people, I’m not concerned if my phone number gets placed online. I don’t generally don’t want my email address placed online where it can be harvested by spambots, but I’m not concerned about my phone number.

In fact, if someone is complaining about something I’m doing, but I think I’m doing a good job, I encourage the discussion, as long as it can remain respectful.

But then again, my job is communications. I need to be involved. If I were a medical assistant it might be a different thing.

General rules: Be as open and transparent as possible and stay focused on your primary mission.

Would love to know the context of the blog piece… but in general I agree with Aldon… be open, transparent and engaging… Keep the dialog open but offer to take it offline and handle it efficiently, etc.

The letter that was scanned and appears on the blog is really just a form letter; the complaint is with the process (one part of which included a collections agency) and though the blogger doesn’t name the staff person in what he/she wrote, he/she did make derogatory comments about the staff person.

While it is the staff person’s job to handle such things, we generally just give out/publicize a main number, not a specific name or extension.

The negative post wasn’t what raised concern so much as the scanned correspondence.

Thanks for the suggestions.

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