It's the worst! When an email or phone call comes in from an otherwise happy customer. They have a complaint, something isn't right and they want it fixed now. You scramble, rush to help them. And in the process you both get more and more frustrated. Sound familiar?
The communication breakdown when frustration occurs can be the demise of an otherwise good relationship. How can we keep this from happening? Here are some tips that I always turn to:
- Identify the problem: Make sure you understand what they are talking about! This is key, you can't help them otherwise!
- Sympathize: It's different than apologize. Sympathizing with them will let them know you understand why they feel that way. "Wow, I can see where you're coming from. Let me look into this for you!" Can go a long way
- Act: Tell them you're going to address or look into it right away. This lets them know that you care and will do your best to help them.
- Follow up: I find that even if the solution isn't great or ideal, it's best to get back to them either way. Explain the solution in the simplest way possible and listen to their follow up questions.
It’s your job to restore their faith in your company, but first, you need to find out where the problem is.
Instilling steps like this in your Customer Service process, is also key. It will help them, help others, therefore allowing everyone to stay frustration-free. (I always ask my Client Success Managers, do you understand what the client is asking?)
You are not a miracle worker, but you can help make a situation easier for your customers. Communication and a little bit of heart goes a long way!
Lindsey Ziccardi // Director of Client Success