It’s easy to have your good mood shattered by a nasty customer, an out-of-the-blue criticism or a computer system that refuses to cooperate.
Think of angry customers as a creativity test. Satisfy them without letting their discontent bring you down.
1. Stay positive. Picture irate customers as children lost in the woods. Only you can guide them to safety. Naturally, they’re tired and cranky, but with some kindness and patience you can get them through this ordeal.
2. Tell them you must write down what they’re saying, and ask if they can speak a bit more slowly. That forces them to organize their thoughts into manageable units. Bonus: You’ll have a record of the information you’ll need to deal with the complaint.
3. When it sounds like the customer has a whole laundry list of issues, say this: “Mr. Herrick, it sounds as if you have several questions today. I’m certain I can help you with each one. First, let’s focus on your biggest concern.” That helps you organize the call into workable units.
4. Refresh and renew. After a frustrating conversation is over, forget about it. Don’t rehash it with co-workers. Shove it aside and direct all your attention to the next customer. It’s better for you and for them.