Part of running a business means having to have customer interaction. After all, without customers, a business would fail to be a business. The customers are the ones who put your meals on the table and make it possible to keep your business thriving. Therefore, even though they may be difficult to deal with at times they are to be valued and dealt with as an asset.
Difficult customers don’t have to be difficult, however. All it takes is knowing the proper skills in order to handle the situation properly without getting overly emotional. Usually difficult customers are difficult because of factors that have nothing to do with you personally. Therefore, part of being able to successfully handle incidents with difficult customers means not taking anything personally. Here are some of the best tips for dealing with difficult customers successfully.
Ultimately when people are upset about something, they just want to be listened to. They want to express their frustrations and feel as if their concerns and needs are being acknowledged.
One of the best things that you can do when handling an emotional or demanding customer is to first listen. Let them finish their entire train of thought before you start speaking. You can nod and show that you are listening as they speak but do not interject until they are finished.
You’ll find that this works not only when handling difficult customers but can be useful in most situations in life when dealing with others. Listening skills are extremely valuable tools.
Even if you don’t agree with what your customer is complaining about or demanding, it’s important never to argue. Even if they are telling you that 1 + 1 = 10 and you know very well that it equals 10. Arguing with a self-righteous customer is only going to escalate the situation and lead to more anger on their part.
You can state facts and point things out in a non-argumentative way, however never tell a customer that they are wrong. The saying, “The customer is always right” is completely accurate.
When you attempt to put yourself in the shoes of the customer and imagine how they must feel, then you can start to get a better understanding of the big picture.
Showing compassion for their circumstances ensures that you are going to deal with them in a more caring way which will likely encourage them to calm down faster.
Offer a Solution
In addition to always listening to the problem, you should also be ready to offer a solution. When you give a solution then you are moving towards resolution rather than spinning your wheels getting nowhere.