Angry customers are a familiar template for customer service executives. Here are a few helpful tips to get over this persistent problem.
Anger is a common emotion in customer service. Often expertly channelled by enterprising customers, a customer service professional has to constantly be on his/her toes in order to deal with it properly. There are multiple ways in which this could go wrong. An angry customer quite unwilling to listen to reason is a familiar template. An angry customer who is averse to being placated, a rather typical archetype. Hence, servicing everyone in a positive manner becomes a trying job for the men and women in customer service. This is especially the case for the volatile ones that make the call with barely repressed anger boiling in the surface. Here are a few ways with which angry customer can be effectively contained:
The Act of Sympathy
In traditional customer servicing frameworks, the act of getting your point across is king. Most professionals often forget that good communication often demands you to make your point at the right point in time. It needs to be packaged with skill and not seem overly contentious. This holds especially true if he or she is already angry about the topic of your conversation. This is where sympathizing with your customer’s plight can effectively neutralise the customer’s need to aggressively antagonise the company you represent. Convincing them that as the organisation’s representative, you understand the issues that they have been having is half the battle won.
The Oxford dictionary defines the term, vent as, “An opening that allows air, gas, or liquid to pass out of or into a confined space”. Sometimes it’s not beneath a customer to give out an angry call just for the sake of shouting at another person. As a customer service professional, you are honor bound to be that opening through which the customer can release their overabundance of emotional and mental energy. Failing to do so will cause emotions, just like liquids or gas to build up from inside the confined spaces of their minds and lead to immense pressure. This would not help you or the customer. It is always best to use aggressive listening as a superpower and progressively calm down an agitated customer before attempting to communicate your point across.
Functioning Beyond Insults
Angry outbursts can be swept aside and compartmentalised. The same goes for customers who revel in microaggressions that make it hard for you to do your job. The hardest customer profile that most customer service executives struggle with are the kind of people who resort to personal insults to make their point. These type of people use their voices violently and in most cases, with terrible inflexion. It is important for the customer service agent to not be sucked into that narrative of affront that the customer seems adept at propagating. Failing to do so would be counterproductive in the short as well as the long term. Keeping yourself calm is very important when trying to diffuse a highly volatile situation.
Concocting a Resolution
Solving a customer’s problem is not easy most days. This is especially true if the customer in question is seething about the particular problem he or she has. Maintaining a placid demeanor, working out their problems and offering an optimum solution in this scenario can be a very hard task. Very hard, but not impossible. They key is to be able to professionally separate the customer’s emotion from his or her problems and then proactively identifying a solution. Sometimes the default solution might still fail to assuage their concerns. If this is the case, actively listening to their protests and clearly and concisely explaining your company’s policy is the best approach.
Customer servicing gets into choppy waters when dealing with angry customers. Keeping calm and pleasantly engineering optimum solutions would be the best recourse with which a customer service executive can calm down angry clients. Matching tones of aggression can only lead to very damaging results.