Anyone who has ever worked in customer service knows the perils of having to deal with a dissatisfied client. Despite your efforts to calm them down they seem to get more and more flustered, and you quickly follow suit.
Unfortunately, regardless of whether a customer is right or wrong, the rules say that the customer is always right in the world of business.
Dealing with demanding customers is something that takes practice and the right tactics to bring them down to a calm state. In order to diffuse the situation and stay calm under pressure, try the following tips.
Clarify The Issue
The first step to moving forward in a dispute between customer and customer service is to identify what the issue is. Often the customer is upset about things which they have in fact misunderstood.
Often you can diffuse an issue within moments by merely clarifying your product details and services. As a result, you will determine if the company is at fault or if the client just didn’t understand.
Be sure to use active listening and repeat what they say so that they feel you clearly understand what they’re talking about. They’ll be much less likely to become increasingly frustrated if they feel their concerns are being recognized.
It’s important to let them know how sorry you are for their dissatisfaction regardless of whether they are correct or not.
Apologizing doesn’t necessarily mean that you take the blame, but it expresses that you’re sorry they’re feeling displeased.
One of the biggest mistakes that customer service representatives make when handling difficult customers is failing to listen. Sometimes they speak too quickly and the customer feels ignored and misunderstood which leads to things escalating even more.
Sometimes the best solution is to be quiet and listen to a customer release steam about the negative experience they had. Once they’re finished speaking, then you can say your part.
Take Deep Breaths
When dealing with particularly tricky customers, it’s hard not to take it personally, especially if they start getting personal.
When someone starts getting unreasonably angry or out of line, it’s up to you to take deep breaths and be the professional. Don’t let them drag you down to the same emotional level. You will only find yourself in deeper problems and may even lose your job.
Offer a Solution
The ultimate goal when handling a customer complaint is to arrive at a solution. By giving them an answer and some kind of resolution, they’ll feel much less conflicted and frustrated at the end of your confrontation.
The best customer service departments admit blame and offer consolation. The cost of giving a free or reduced price offer compared to losing a customer forever is far lower in the long run.