This is guest column is authored by Akhila Ashraf, Social Media Consultant & Marketing Manager, Kreative Sparkz
There are numerous occasions when your customers either get angry or they are dis-satisfied with you or your company – some of which are relevant and some not, but when you are in Business you need to accept it as a part and parcel of your professional life. At a certain point, some customers might hit hard which would hurt our self-esteem and pride but yet we have to take the conversation ahead with the so called “not-so-satisfied customers” fairly often. If we know what to say and, more importantly, how to say it, we may be able to save the situation.
Below are the 7 directions on how to handle the so-called-rude customers, whether it is on the phone, or on a live chat or live help session, or anything else, all without losing your cool.
1. Never lose your mind
Once you are aware that your client is unsatisfied then the first priority of yours is to put yourself into a customer service mindset. Each individual has a different mindset and so would be their situation, so just be polite and believe that it may take a little longer for the person on the other end to relax. Do not try to interrupt and simply focus on what the client has to say about the scenario.
2. Be a good listener
Keep in mind that the customer is not frustrated with you. They are irritated with the performance of your product or the quality of the service you provide. Listen to them and offer them with a solution on how you can help them to solve their situation.
Start the conversation with a statement, such as, “Let’s go over what happened,”. This finely designs a partnership between you and your client, and lets him know that you’re willing to listen.
3. Never argue back
As a professional, you should never argue back. If customers begin to mistreat you verbally, let them know that you understand their frustration and that being rude will not solve their problem. If you are dealing with them in person, body language can be crucial aspect at this point. Keep an eye contact. Stand or sit up straight. Keep your arms uncrossed. Show how closely you’re paying attention to their problem.
Let the customer know that you are genuinely sorry for what had happened with them after purchasing the product from you. If you want him/her to stay as your customer, you need to express an apology for the issue they are facing. Depending on the customer’s complaint and the direction of the conversation, there are a few different ways you can apologize.
- “I’m sorry you are unhappy with our performance. Let’s work together to turn things around.”
- “I’m sorry you didn’t receive your purchase on time. Let me find out what I can do to make it up to you.”
- “I’m sorry you are so upset. I understand where you are coming from, and I will do my best to help you.”
5. Explore Solutions
Once you understand that your customer is unhappy, it’s now the time to offer them with a solution. Work with your customer to find a solution that mutually benefits both your customer and you, else you will go right back to where the conversation had begun. Always, keep in mind that you are running a business and simply offering a refund to a customer’s complaint is not a solution. The solution should be fair and reasonable for both the parties.
6. Relieve Your Stress
Let your anger drain away once your meeting is over with the customer, you should in-fact feel proud of handling such a wonderful situation. It tames you much better as a person. Whether you take a walk around the office, drink a cup of coffee, eat a piece of candy, or vent to a coworker, do not keep stress suppress inside you. If you do not take the stress over from you, then you will be a living time bomb waiting to lose the patience on your next angry customer.
7. Follow Up
When possible, follow-up with the customer after sufficient time has run-off to explain that the helpful action has been effective. A phone call or a personalized postcard gains an individual’s attention and acknowledgement. This follow-up after the anger has low-set and the helpful action has been explained as effective may be enough to hold loyal customers and earn a few new ones.
Image Credit – Creative Digest