handling negative client feedback

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greetings to all,

i am looking for insight into how to deal with negative client feedback - specifically, strategies for the client-handling team to deal on that feedback with the client; and, ways for the team itself to stay positive and motivated in the face of such feedback. contextual information follows, as well as some questions we have begun to ponder. thanks for your time and attention.

i am an internal consultant at a data processing company. one of my clients is a service team that is managing a highly visible, high-stress, prolonged client project. our management is pleased with their work, and so are the top management at the client. that recognition has slowly begun to trickle down to middle-level contacts at the client. but, many of the folks at that level (day-to-day operational folks) are quite negative, vocal and unappreciative. the team's good work is unrewarded; one slip is an excuse for a public flogging. this behavior, by the way, is in marked contrast to that of our other clients.

some questions we are asking ourselves: what would best help this client team in this situation? what's the cost to our client team of receiving this constant barrage of bad reviews? how do they stay motivated? how can our organization counter-balance the negativity? what skills would help the client team deal "in the moment" with severe client reactions? what skills would help them deal, overall, in this atmosphere? what relationship-building can be done with the angry/dissatified clients?

Paul G. Kimmerling Donovan Data Systems 212.633.5106

-- paul g kimmerling (paul.kimmerling@donovandata.com), July 30, 2001

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