Customer Service

Customer Service Tips: Conflict Resolution with an Upset Customer

by Caug124

September 13th, 2012

From time to time, you will have to deal with a customer or client who is very upset. No matter who is to blame, it is always important to keep a few principles in mind to improve rather than deteriorate the situation with the customer. Here are some customer service tips for dealing with an upset customer:

  1. Stay calm. Try to remain diplomatic and polite. Getting angry will only make the customer angrier.
  2. Try to see things from the customer’s point of view. Perhaps you would also feel upset if you were in the same situation.
  3. Thank the person for raising the concern and do it sincerely. Emphasize the importance of satisfied customers to you and your organization.
  4. Listen for understanding. Sometimes the irate caller just wants someone to listen to their story, even if you are unable to help them.
  5. Ask questions to get their facts and feelings. Listen to learn rather than to prepare your response. Don’t respond too quickly.
  6. Find points of agreement with their concerns. Establish common ground to show the person you are listening.
  7. Always show a willingness to resolve the problem or conflict. Make the conflict resolution seem as easy as possible.
  8. Be genuine and show your personality. Respond as an understanding friend rather than by citing policies.
  9. Be firm but understanding with your answers.
  10.  As a last resort, offer to have your supervisor talk to the caller. Your supervisor may say the same things, but sometimes hearing it from someone else has a positive effect on the customer.

For more tips, please visit Dale Carnegie’s Customer Service Tips section or explore Dale Carnegie’s customer service relationship management training.

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  1. Jonso the Ponzo /

    In other words, turn around, take your pants off, bend over and let them f you deep and hard even if they’re using a strap-on.
    And then say “Thank you so very much. Is there anything else I can do for you?”

    • Michael /

      Jonso the Ponzo, I don’t believe the article is inferring you need to take abuse. It is focusing on showing poise, emotional intelligence and being a professional, defusing tension and then focusing on problem solving.

      Your email probably doesn’t best express whom you are – many upset clients/customers just want to know they are being listened to and that you will help them find a reasonable solution.

      Your thoughts could be best expressed without vulgarity. You feel customers run over you sometimes and you don’t feel it’s necessary to interact with the worst of them.

  2. liz /

    exactly. there is no reason to take abuse from customers.

  3. John B /

    There are any number of personality types one may encounter in dealing with customer complaints regardless of the type or level of product or service. Some of the customers who complain most loudly at the beginning of the encounter may in fact become your biggest fan if the situation is handled properly. Other customers may Yelp! your company negatively even after the complaint has been resolved to or beyond their expectations. You can just never really tell, but as long as you tried your best within reason to resolve the complaint, you’ve done your job. Always be willing to bend over backwards for a complaining customer, but be careful when you bend over in front of them.