Dealing with an irate customer can be one of the most trying times for you and your business. However, if handled properly, such incidents can be an eye-opening and help you in your overall customer management skills. Remember, there’s no business that never has an unhappy customer.
And it’s the business which works the hardest at satisfying irate customers, that generally does the best overall. Here are a few easy-to-implement solutions that can help you deal with an angry customer in an efficient and reasonable manner.
Understand the problem • Don’t take it personally if a customer shouts at you. It is seen that most angry customers aren’t angry with you personally, but rather with the situation in which they currently find themselves.
• Let the customer tell you the entire story while you listen attentively without interrupting him.
• Remember, controlling your emotions and having patience with your customers will go a long way in winning over hostile customers.
• Stay calm and empathize with the customer. The argument will only make a difficult situation worse.
Create solutions • to Acknowledge the customer’s problems in a polite manner and ask them what they are displeased with.
• Take ownership of the problem and apologize.
• Get the entire facts from all sides and all parties concerned as quickly and efficiently as possible.
• Be positive in approach. Try and express your point of view assertively without offending your customer’s feelings.
• Tell your customer what you can do for him. If your suggestion doesn’t appeal to the customer, ask him what he would like you to do and see if you can accommodate him.
Fix the problem
• Once you and the customer agree on the solution to the problem, strive to solve it quickly and effectively, because that makes customers feel you are being responsive to them.
• Meanwhile, if you feel it is warranted and if possible, consider offering a freebie or a future discount on another product to show good faith. That way, the client not only feels like you dealt with the problem, but will most likely stay a loyal customer.
• Keep your promises. If you said you would call and check on something, do it, and do it in the time frame you promised. • Correct the issue for the customer and also look for long term corrective measures.
• Reassure the customer that you will willingly assist in the event that another different problem should occur again.
• Once the problem has been fixed, call the customer with progress reports. Ask if they are satisfied with the solution. If they are not, see if there is anything that can be done to increase their satisfaction.
• Thank the customer for bringing the problem to your attention as it will allow you to better meet the needs of your other customers.
THE REAL SOLUTION The best way to deal with irate customers is to avoid giving them reason to become angry in the first place. Satisfying customers’ needs through your products and/or services, training your staff well and keeping your promises to the customers will always ensure that such a situation never arises.