Dealing with Dissatisfied Customers
All businesses must occasionally deal with dissatisfied customers. However, without the proper training, you could inadvertently escalate the situation—exposing yourself and those around you to dangerous risks. To help avoid making the situation worse, review the following best practices for neutralizing friction when resolving customer dissatisfaction. The first step in handling a dissatisfied customer is determining whether his or her behavior could be classified as unacceptable or unreasonable. This type of behavior may include the following:
- Aggressive or abusive behavior—such as threats, physical violence, verbal abuse, inflammatory statements or more
- Repeated complaints about a matter that cannot be undone or altered
- Repeated efforts throughout a formal investigation to change the nature or focus of a complaint to satisfy his or her desired outcome.
After identifying whether the customer’s behavior is unacceptable or unreasonable, the next step involves mitigating the potential risk.
According to customer intelligence consulting firm Walker Info, by 2020 customer experience will be more important to consumers than the price or the quality of a product.
The following are just a few of the most effective strategies for handling these types of situations:
- Introduce yourself and use calming language.
- Adopt a relaxed posture and be sure to move and speak slowly.
- Acknowledge the customer’s disappointment with the service that he or she has received.
- Reassure the customer that the complaint will be addressed in a timely manner.
- Explain what your company’s complaints procedure is, and how his or her complaint will be handled.
- Confirm what steps will be taken to address the complaint and how long it will reasonably take to receive a response.
- Advise the customer that his or her behavior is unacceptable and must stop.
- Remain calm and in control of the situation as best you can.
Remember to be tactful yet assertive, and understanding yet firm. For more information on how to deal with dissatisfied customers, fill out the Contact Us form on the right or call us at (800) 350-7676.