Every now and then, an angry customer walks into your company’s offices or calls in about an issue or concern that has frustrated them.
The best companies know this is actually an opportunity to set their company apart by attending to the customer’s frustrations and resolving the issue. It’s a chance to turn a source of negative word-of-mouth testimony into something positive.
In Australia, there are lots of companies which do quite a good job in giving awesome customer experience. It doesn’t matter what industry or sector they’re part of. People expect great customer experience whether you’re selling home appliances, automobiles, computers, or photocopiers in Sydney. It is the same with services, whether you’re offering home cleaning or painting services in Melbourne.
An encounter with an angry customer is a potential turning point for your company. You can turn an angry customer into a loyal one who will buy more of your products or continue further with your services. Here’s how to do it.
1. Listen Intently And Actively
The first thing you need to understand when you encounter an angry customer is that they want to say something and they’re looking for someone who can do something to resolve their concern.
A lot of angry customers are those who’ve already had it. They’re the ones who’ve already made a visit to your office or called your office phones several times to complain about hidden bill charges or the voltage of the appliance they bought. The fact that they’re irate means they’ve lost their patience because their issue or concern hasn’t been resolved yet, despite their numerous attempts to be heard.
Listen intently and actively. Before you say anything, make the customer feel you’re all ears. When the customer starts to narrate the issue or problem, listen actively to know if you can pick up a few other things about the issue that could help resolve it.
2. Recognize The Issue And Apologize
If you can look for a timely opening, recognize the issue of the customer and apologize for all the trouble, inconvenience, or unnecessary worry that it has caused the customer.
You don’t have to say anything long and winding. Just a sincere recognition of the customer’s issue will do. Say something that clearly communicates to the customer you understand the issue and you’re there to help resolve it.
3. Empathize And Let Them Feel You Understand
When you’re dealing with an angry client or irate customer, it’s often not enough to just recognize their issue or concern and say you’re going to do something about it.
Angry customers are already very emotional, and it would help if you can call them by name, empathize, and let them feel you understand them.
For instance, if they’re complaining about something they bought from you, recognize your company’s shortcomings and let them know you understand how this made them feel frustrated or upset. But assure them that you’re going to act on their concern.
4. Tell Them What You’re Going To Do
As soon as you understand the issue or concern of the customer, and why or how it made them angry or irate, give them an outline or bird’s eye view of what you’re going to do to resolve their issue or concern. You’re basically giving a plan of action to the customer.
Giving a plan or outline of action to an angry customer helps you address numerous concerns all at one time. You let the customer know you fully understand their concern. You can also tell the customer what needs to be done to resolve their issue. While you’re doing this, it’s also an opportunity to make the customer understand the processes from the company’s end.
5. Resolve The Issue
After all is said and done, what they want to hear from you is that you’re going to resolve the issue. The only thing more important for them to hear than this is if you can tell them you’re going to resolve their issue right there and then.
If it’s something within your paygrade to do, and there’s nothing else to be done by someone else or by another department, then you might as well give your customer a good customer service experience by resolving their issue. Take the opportunity to positively position your company and how you go to lengths to give excellent service and give customers the best experience possible.
Their Story About Your Company
Whenever you’re able to resolve the concern of an angry customer, you also give them something to remember about your company. Often, it’s these little things that become their story about your company. When people ask them about your company, it’s what they’ll remember.