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Tips to Handle Difficult Customers

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“I WANT TO SPEAK TO YOUR MANAGER.”

Here comes a difficult customer. The obvious signs of a difficult customer includes being highly emotional and having unreasonable demands. They often ask to speak to a higher up who they think has the authority to override standard operating procedures. 

In the customer service industry, it is inevitable that we will encounter difficult customers. However, it is important that we handle them well and try to raise their spirits. We don’t want them to leave unhappy and cause damage to our business. Besides, they’re a great opportunity for the business to learn and improve. Thus, here are some tips on customer management.

• Stay Calm.

It’s instinctive to want to react negatively when faced with a rude customer. Instead, take a few deep breaths and regain your composure. You could even strategically put the customer on hold for both of you to reign in your emotions. 

• Be Empathic.

Show that you understand why the customer is upset. This can help soothe the customer and make communication easier.

• Listen Actively.

Focus on the words rather than the customer’s emotions. Get to the root of the problem so you can work on solving it immediately.

• Repeat Information back to the customer.

This helps clarify any miscommunication and shows the customer that their concerns have been heard.

Explain the solution

Go through the steps you’ll take to solve the problem with the customer. This will keep them updated and confident in your abilities to solve their issue. 

• Set a time to follow-up.

If a problem cannot be solved in one call, let the customer know you’ll be in touch so they don’t have to worry or constantly call back.

• Summarise the next steps.

Ensure that the customer knows what to expect after the call and the time frame they should expect it.

Don’t worry and remember these prompts whenever you get a difficult customer. Follow these steps and watch a difficult customer turn into a satisfied customer!

Teach these notes to other customer service agents and we might even reduce the number of difficult customers out there.

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