Criticism of Other Businesses


  • Write an external critical message to a company you are not associated with.

Writing a critical message to an unassociated company should follow the following guidelines:

  1. Be professional.
  2. Use direct writing structure in most cases.
  3. Be clear and concise.
  4. Be fair and even.

In these critical communications to a third party, it is best to get right to the point. Explain the situation clearly and concisely, including all relevant facts. Be fair and even so that you can maintain a good professional relationship with the company.

Here is an example of a critical message to a third party.

To: Customer Service: Franklin Illumination

From: Helen Hubka

Subject: Your Sub-Standard Performance For Our Gala


To Whom It May Concern:


I am writing on behalf of the Jones Company regarding your service at our gala last week where your company was contracted to provide lighting.


We are extremely disappointed with the performance of your company. First, the lighting was not consistent with what your salesperson had promised. Instead of four banks of spots, there were only three. That left the entire coffee area in the dark for the evening. Second, the motorized lighting that was to follow the speakers from side-stage to the podium was completely non-functional. We were told by your technician that there was a “computer glitch.” Finally, the special audience illumination at the end of the award presentation did not come on in time.


Before you send us the final invoice, we believe there should be some remuneration for the lapses in your service that evening.


Best regards,


Helen Hubka

Director of Operations

Jones Company

This example follows the listed guidelines fairly closely. The point of the message is clearly stated in the message subject line. The tone of the message is professional and even, despite the firmness of the language. The message contained three examples illustrating the reason for the criticism. The close requested compensation for the poor performance, which should come as no surprise given the body of the message.