Organisme Formateur agréé par Emploi-Québec - Agrément # 0057911

Le blogue de Solutions & Co.

Le blogue de Solutions & Co.

Tips & Co. #402 - Aggressive customers

What to do when a customer is aggressive? First, ask yourself what could drive someone to become violent and what the factors are that create and increase anger. Few people become suddenly violent; oftentimes, violence and aggressiveness are a last resort “solution” to try to regain control of a situation that’s been rotting for some time. This is why it is important to know how to prevent and defuse difficult situations.

That being said, when a customer is getting angry… they truly are and they can choose unpleasant behaviours that can and must be handled. But there are behaviours that are considered unacceptable: violence, threats and insults.

In those situations, it is useless to try being heroic, but important to maintain a safe environment. Anticipate an action plan allowing you to put an end to the exchange, to ask the customer to leave, or to call for help if needed.

  333 lectures
333 lectures

Tips & Co. #387 - When the customer is angry

Remember that the customer is angry at the situation. You are not part of the problem; you are part of the solution! What could you say to a customer to make them understand that you are part of the solution and not of the problem?
  • “I can certainly look at it immediately.”
  • “I am on it as soon as I hang up.”
  • “I am on it and I’ll call you back in an hour.”
Not taking it personally is not that easy! But when we do it, we become defensive, which damages your credibility.
  384 lectures
384 lectures

Tips & Co. #382 - Is the customer always right?

The customer is not always right… Evidently, you could make your point, even have the last word. You might even be right. However, right or wrong, your effort will be in vain: It is not possible to win an argument with a customer.

Your goal is to acquire, maintain, and increase a loyal clientele, not to be right. If you win the argument, you might damage your relationship with the customer. Whether your organization is private or public, it is always a LOSING outcome for YOU.

The customer isn’t always right but he is the customer. We have to find a fair solution that answers his requests while respecting the needs of the organization!

  502 lectures
502 lectures

Tips & Co. #377 - Saying ‘NO’ to the customer

No customer likes to be told “no”. However, like it or not, the circumstances sometimes force us to say “no”. But, this does not have to become a negative situation.

Here are some ways to respond to the challenge:

Tell the customer what you can do.
“I can issue a credit for the value of the merchandise and you can use it at your convenience.”

With tact, explain why you cannot honour the customer's request.
“When a product works as expected, without defects, we cannot take responsibility and, as a result, we cannot offer financial compensation.”

Suggest an alternative.
“I need to get approval from my manager before I can _________________. In the meantime, I can ___________________. Does this work for you?”

Focus on the positive.
“Thank you for contacting me regarding this problem” or “The information you have given me will help us make improvements.”

Remember that you are saying “no” to the request, not to the person.

  432 lectures
432 lectures

Tips & Co. #372 - Use the polite repetition technique

When the customer is angry, it is sometimes difficult for us to calm them down. In these situations, the polite repetition technique proves effective and helps the customer redirect towards working on solving problems rather than focusing on negative emotions.

The technique involves calmly repeating what you just said and repeating it again until the customer understands. You must not raise your voice or defend yourself, as you must keep your tone level neutraland polite.

For example:

  • Customer: “Your service is horrible. I sent the form and I never heard back from you.”
  • You: “When did you send the form, Mr. Smith?”
  • Customer: “I have waited long enough, I have no patience left.”
  • You: “When did you send the form, Mr. Smith?”
  • Customer: “You would not last two minutes in the private sector with service like this”
  • You: “Mr. Smith, I need to know when you sent the form so that I can help you.”

Polite repetition can also be used when customers are not accepting your answer. They may believe that they may make you change your mind by continuing to insist or that they will get you to work around the rules for them. The polite repetition then lets the customer know that your answer is firm.

In the long run, the customer will understand and accept your answer.

  466 lectures
466 lectures

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…et nos clients aussi!

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Xavier Aymé, Chef des opérations | Mercator Canada Inc.

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