7 Ways a Customer Service Representative Can Deal with an Irate Customer

Deal with an Irate Customer

Let’s begin with a simple fact of life, shall we? You cannot make everyone happy about yourself. But if you are a business owner, unhappy customers are something you cannot afford to ignore. There will be complaints about your products or services, there will be irate customers. The idea is to cool them off with unparalleled customer service. It’s that simple, really!

Now, we are not talking about doing the impossible here. It is all about simple gestures your customer service representatives can show while handling a complaint call. Therefore, a business needs to put more emphasis on complaint handling while training the reps. here are some of the points that a customer service representative has to take care of while dealing with a particularly upset customer.

  1. Let the customer be angry

What is the number one trick to calm an upset customer? Let him vent their anger and discontentment with a business. It is better not to interrupt them even if the agents think that the caller’s accusation is not entirely valid. Once they vent their anger, they will be more likely to listen to a solution your reps have to offer.

Do not worry about the customer getting too angry. They are not likely to turn into a Hulk.

  1. Don’t take it personally

It is a good practice to let the customers vent the anger.  But it is never good for the agents to take that anger personally. Getting caught up in that anger and emotions will only frustrate the agent and make them behave rudely with the customers, which can further worsen the situation. On the other hand if the agents distant themselves from the anger and listen carefully to the issue that the customer is facing, it with allow them to resolve the issues at the quickest possible time.

At Fusion CX, we know from our experience that an irate customer does not always want a refund. In most cases they just want the business to listen to their problem and find out a solution. Sometimes it is natural for them to have emotional outburst, but all they are looking for someone to treat them with empathy.

  1. Listen and repeat

This is a psychological technique known as mirroring. This technique is often employed by psychotherapists as a way of confirming their patients’ concerns without judging them. If you use the same technique in customer service domain, it will mean listening to a customer’s problems and repeating the same to them with empathy.  This will allow your customers feel that their problem is heard and understood.

  1. Take hold of the problem

When a customer care representative faces a highly irate customer, they should distance themselves from the customer’s anger. But while doing so, they should never distance themselves from the problem. No matter whose fault it is, the representative needs to apologize and own that issue on an organizational level and express their eagerness to resolve the problem.

At Fusion CX, we reinforce the importance of recognizing a problem as part of our customer service training.

  1. The customer comes first

While dealing with a customer, a customer service representative should focus on the customer and not on the problem. Seems confusing, doesn’t it? Just in the previous point we have told that a customer service representative should own the problem and now we are suggesting that they should focus on the customer instead.

But if you think about it, it doesn’t sound confusion at all. Just solving a problem is not the main job of a customer service representative; their main job is to turn an unhappy customer into a satisfied customer who will remain loyal to the brand. Therefore, they should just thing issue resolution as a mean to make the customers happy.

  1. Resolve the issue or provide an alternative

In a perfect world, a customer service representative should be able to resolve every issue a customer has. However, depending on the nature of the problem, that is not always possible. In such case, a customer should offer the customer an alternative and assure the customer that such a problem is highly unlikely to occur in the future.

  1. Don’t forget to follow up

What is the biggest concern of the customers these days? They think that they are getting impersonal service that show that the organization does not really care about its customers. Therefore, adding a personal touch to the conversation is a must while dealing with an irate customer. Treat them with empathy and send a follow-up enquiry about the resolved problem a month later will make the customers feel taken care of.

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