Dealing with customers isn’t an exact science. Because they always come first, it’s essential to be courteous and professional. For the sake of the company’s reputation, you can’t be rude or belligerent. But, sometimes, the person on the other end of the phone will do are say things which are infuriating. Suddenly, you’re pissed off and in a sticky situation. Say the wrong thing and you’ll lose a customer for good, but keep it inside and things might boil over.
For tips on how to deal with these challenging situations, read on to find out about the art of being pissed and professional at the same time.
Distance Is A Wonderful Thing
The best thing to do is to put distance between you and the customer in the first place. As the boss or a senior manager, it’s not your job to deal with their queries. There are customer service advisors who take care of that kind of thing. If not, your assistant should be able to bear the weight of many of the conversations while relaying the message to yours truly. They will escalate when necessary but choosing the right person for this role, (someone with great emotional intelligence) will make a huge difference.
Another option is a P.O Box. Writing letters and calling an office where you aren’t situated is another excellent way to put the distance between both parties. Of course, you can’t ‘seem’ distant so you need to respond promptly.
Prep Your Mind
No one wants to deal with angry customers yet it’s a part of life. As a professional manager or boss, you only get the worse conversations too. So, you know it isn’t going to be a pleasant experience when an operator asks for your help. Before you pick up the receiver and say hello, be sure to prepare your mind.
Take some big deep breaths to help reduce stress levels, before you pick up the phone.
Don’t let the negative emotions start until you’ve exchanged a couple of sentences. The best case scenario is the solution is a simple one and there’s no need for shouting and yelling.
It’s ok to Warn Them
For the most part, it’s your job to be professional and absorb anything which comes your way. However, there are instances when the customer can step over the line, such as swearing and threats. On these occasions, you’re more than welcome communicate & to warn the person about their behavior and tell them you won’t continue the call. No should have to deal with abuse regardless of the level of service provided. Warn them twice and hang up after the third expletive.
Stay Focused On The Future
When someone is treating you like a piece of dirt on the bottom of their shoe, it’s hard not to get emotional. But, one professional approach which helps is to keep your perspective. All they want is an apology and a gesture of goodwill and they’re using intimidation to get it. In the end, all it takes is ten minutes on the phone and the conversation will be over with completely.
Sometimes, that, and the idea of a large glass of wine after the shift, is enough to stay calm while they vent.
And now its over to you to put these new professional strategies to test! We’d love to hear how you go putting these ideas into practice. Please share your experience in the comments section below!
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Articles written by our internal Daily Guru writers, who are certified & qualified growth & development professionals.