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    Tips for Managing Difficult Customers

     

    It doesn’t matter if ‘almost everyone’ likes the business you’re doing.

    Regardless of how excellent your customer service is, there will still be difficult customers. Some may have been vexed truly by a problem they encountered with your business while some may be just plain rude and angry about something that has nothing to do with the company.

    If you’re working in customer service, this is inevitable. It’s part of the job and it needs to be done equally well.

    After speaking with several industry experts, we’ve been able to come up with many ways to help you put the situation under control. The situation may seem a hopeless or cringe-worthy one but here are a few tips that may help you turn these awkward moments into more positive experiences.

    1. Getting Prepared

    Your knowledge of the service and the product will impact your success in turning difficult situations into positive ones. You’ll have to build a strong foundation already. This can include getting a vivid look into the customer’s profile before getting on the phone with them.

    Perhaps there are open support tickets, negative customer notes or surveys connected to the customers, or more. All of these will help you get a better understanding of what lies ahead so you can be prepared to handle the situation.

    1. Seeing the Potential in Every Difficulty

    Customer service personnel should understand that there is always an opportunity to turn around different difficult situations.

    In some cases, if you’re able to do a good job, you’ll be able to create an experience that is highly positive and impressive than what would have been possible without the situation, to begin with.

    Whenever you encounter a difficult situation, being aware that every situation is a challenge will help you handle the situations better.

    1. Tailoring Your Approach to Customers’ Personalities

    We have unique personalities and the same is true for difficult customers.

    The Disc Framework categorizes human personalities into four places; the dominant, cautious, supportive, and inspiring personalities.

    Once you’re able to recognize the personality of your customer, you can then tailor your approach to their problems o suit the way they’d prefer to interact.

    1. Changing Communication Channels

    There are those times you’ll feel tempted to restrict interactions to email or a particular channel. Oftentimes you may even be tempted to cut off conversations perhaps for the sake of time. This, as it turns out, doesn’t help much.

    By giving customers enough space and time to voice their displeasure, this oftentimes evokes a feeling of being heard which in itself is a part of the problem resolution.

    One way to make things better is to get on the phone with a customer who has been communicating over email. This way, they feel their problems are taken seriously and they are being heard.

    1. Strike the Balance Between Boundaries and Empathy

    Granted that you have a great approach to handle rude customers. Still, that does not make it easy to handle abrasive and abusive languages.

    It’s important that you find and maintain your balance between these two lines. Understand when you have to be calm and listen and when you need to get back up when the situation is becoming too uncomfortable.

    1. Be Creative!

    There are conventional ways of handling big bad customer experiences. However, thinking outside the box and going outside the norm can considerably lessen the negativity that would usually encounter such occurrences.

    As it turns out, creativity and innovations are always a part of big successes and on the worst days, being creative with your interaction and solution to the customer’s terrible situation may help you turn the situation around.

    1. Be Sincere in Your Interactions

    When you have to apologize, be sincere and don’t keep on rambling. Additionally, you’ll have to be accurate about every word as you interact with customers. You certainly don’t want to be caught lying.

    Not only will your customers hate insincerity and dishonesty, but both of these are also the fastest route to losing credibility. If customer loyalty is part of your service goals, dishonesty and insincerity should have no place in your customer interactions.

    1. Remember to Fall Back on Your Team

    You might have thought about everything possible and still, the situation still looks very tough. It’s not like you’re supposed to be all sufficient. That’s why you’re one part of a team. You can consult team members for support as well. Oftentimes, this can give you a great head start to turn around a tough situation.

    Being aware that difficult customers will always be a part of the job helps a lot. Keeping these tips above in mind also will help you approach the situation better. Remember, in customer service, there’s always an opportunity in every difficulty.   

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