This year has been tough for many people and a little extra kindness goes a long way. To help you cope with potentially difficult customers this holiday season, consider these five tips:
Ever heard the saying, ‘don’t fight fire with fire’? Whether a customer’s complaint is justified or not, it’s best to avoid conflict to prevent the situation from escalating. Remember complaints are costly for your business and customers often tell their friends and family about a bad customer service experience or take to social media to vent their concerns. Service with a smile is the best approach!
No hard feelings
Emotions are magnified around the holiday season and more often than not, you’re not the direct cause of the problem. Bear in mind that they are (most likely) angry at the situation they’re in and by showing support and recognising their issue, a customer will feel a lot better about the situation because they know you’re trying to help.
Put yourself in their shoes
Listen and ask questions to make sure you have all of the information you need to find a solution to the problem. It’s not your fault that an order arrived late, or goods have been damaged, but you still have to apologise. Afterall, you’re representing your company and so you need to be on your best behaviour.
Use your breaks
The helter skelter nature of Christmas can be draining, both physically and mentally and you may feel too busy to take a break. Put the Christmas chaos to one side and use your breaks to distance yourself from your workload. If you have dealt with a disgruntled customer that day, use that time to cool off and collect your thoughts.
It can be tempting to try and appease an angry customer but it’s important you don’t promise anything you can’t deliver on. Nothing is more infuriating than being told ‘no’ with no explanation but if you can’t help at that moment in time and need some time to investigate, say so. Providing justification for your response is better than offering no explanation or being dishonest - this will most likely only make things worse.