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Lesson Plan Text
Dealing with Complaints- Step by Step Practice
Work your way through the roleplays below with same roles each time. The roleplays
should start short and easy and get longer and more difficult as you progress through
them. You can use the same topic for each roleplay or change topics, whichever you
1. Your partner will (politely) complain about one of the things below. Apologise.
2. Do the same, but this time replying with an apology and reason why it happened.
3. Do the same, but replying with an apology, reason, and future action.
4. Do the same, but as emails.
5. Do the same, but as a telephone call.
6. Do the same (as telephone calls), but this time also use some phrases for sounding
sympathetic and showing you are listening.
7. Do the same, but with the first phone call leaving a message on your answer machine.
Invoiced for the wrong amount
The wrong information
Low English level of a member of staff
Not replying to an email or answer machine message
Problems with the computer system
Documents not arrived
Delivered the wrong thing
Delivered the wrong amount
Equipment breaking down
Changes since the last batch
Passing on complaints from someone else
Release of personal information
Not giving necessary information
Short working hours
Lack of improvements
Switch roles and do all seven steps again but with a different topic, e.g. another one above
or a more realistic one for you.
Written by Alex Case for UsingEnglish.com © 2012