Say No to Complaints and Cribbing

Commander VK Jaitly

There is a saying: “50% people don’t care if you have a problem,
And the other 50% people are happy that you have a problem.”

This quote may seem amusing but you will agree with me that it is true to a large extent. Just look around the scores of friends and relatives you have and also hundreds and thousands of Facebook and WhatsApp acquaintances you may have.

Are they really bothered about the problems you may be going through? Do they have time even to seriously think of a solution for your problem? I am sure you will also agree with me that there are a large number of people who are normally jealous of you, your family and your business. Such people actually feel happy when you get into a problem. They may give a sympathetic lip service outwardly but inwardly are actually delighted that you got into a soup.

So if that is the case, there is no point in discussing your personal problems with anyone. There is no use complaining and cribbing about your difficulties and complications with the world around you. Yes, there could be some genuine close friends and your mentors or some highly affectionate family members with whom you may share your problems. They may be willing to extend a helping hand in finding a solution of your problems.

You may also have some friends or relatives who are perpetual complainers. Cribbing all the time has become a part of their personality. Even on a telephonic chat after the first ‘Hello’ and ‘How are you ?’ statements their endless cribbing session starts and you start feeling why the hell I picked up his/her phone. And in case, you had given a call, you start repenting on your action and vow not to repeat the mistake. Such people even keep cribbing about the weather. If it is hot weather for everyone, for them it is too hot and unbearable. If it is cold, for them it is extremely chilling and is spoiling their mood and not letting them do anything. These complaining nature results into inertia in their lives and stops them from taking any great initiative. These complainers and cribbers, therefore, will always lag in their life.

Let us be clear that nobody likes a habitual complainer. Yes, everybody has the right to criticize anything that we don’t like. But why can’t we use our communication skills to change the tone of criticism in such a way that it sounds like a polite and firm way to convey your opinion about something which is not desirable or not good for the organization. I do encourage people to be keen observer wherever we go, work or stay. And if we find something wrong, we must express ourselves and also suggest the remedial action to bring about the improvement. We should do this in a way that the other party feels obliged to you for your suggestions.

Regular complaining is a big drainer of energy and enthusiasm. It brings down the performance levels of not only the complainers but also their colleagues and subordinates. Their seniors will find it difficult to handle them. If these habitual complainers are below average performers, you should question yourself why they have been tolerated till now in the organization. If some of them are average performers and you feel that they are good in their knowledge and skills about the job on which they are employed, they need very serious counselling. The management may like to retain such people because of their experience and reasonably good performance but that doesn’t give them the right and authority to keep cribbing about their own organization. Such cribbers and complainers act like termites for the organization. They keep damaging the organization slowly and slowly which may come to the notice of top management a bit too late. By that time, a lot of irreversible damage to the organization may have already been done. Such people bring down the morale of the other people also in the organization.

The timely treatment for such habitual complainers is a must. The management should be pro-active in handling such people. It is possible that some of their complaints and grievances are 100% correct. In that case, immediate appropriate action is a must to remove those glitches, anomalies and faults in the system. In fact, give a pat to these complainers also for bringing those bugs to the notice of the concerned manager or top management. They should also be advised not to air their grievances and complaints at each and every formal and informal forums.

All good organizations have a complaint redressal system even for the employees. If that doesn’t exist in your organization, please institute one as a part of the HR policy.

Here also while lodging a complaint, follow the dictum:
‘Don’t Criticize, Don’t Complaint but Do Convey’

If someone brings the low cleanliness standard in the factory to the notice of Admin head, he or she should be appreciated. If someone notices an overflowing water tank on the rooftop and informs the maintenance manager, it is not complaining but an act of responsible behaviour. Similarly, if a student in the hostel brings to the notice of warden that the quality of tea served is of poor quality, it is the duty of warden to take it seriously and ensure that tea served is of good quality.

The difference between conveying a specific problem to the appropriate authority or the person and making lose statements all the time everywhere should be understood. The first type of people are highly appreciated and are an asset to the organization.

The other variety are lose talkers, have no ownership mentality and have no interest in the betterment of their environment. Their only job is cribbing all the time and everywhere. The social media has become a great platform for such cribbers and complainers. They are victims of too much of negativity in their minds. All efforts should be made to transform their attitude from negative to a positive one. Otherwise, these people can become highly detrimental for the organization and the society in general.

So now onwards, ensure that there are no habitual cribbers and complainers in your organization. And if you know, there are some, initiate the corrective action NOW.