Angry Customers 101

learn to deal with them before they deal with you

Try the simulation below. Your job is to understand the customer's problem and help her figure out the best way to solve it.

1. Assume that the Customer has a Right to be Angry

Nobody makes mistakes on purpose, but they do happen. If you are working in a call center, behind a counter or in any capacity that directly interfaces with customers then you are going to encounter an irate customer at some time. The most common response is to evaluate the merit of the complaint while your are listening to it. Try to curb that common response and replace it with the assumption that the customer has a right to be angry, even before you know the details.

Perhaps the customer feels betrayed because the product or services did not meet expectations. The customer may be angry because he or she made incorrect assumptions that led to improper expectations. The customer may be angry because of previous experiences, previous contacts with your company or simply because the problem occurred at a very inconvenient time in the customer schedule. Regardless of the circumstances, acknowledge the customer has the privilege to be irate. Listen carefully to how the anger is expressed so you can find the root cause of the emotion.

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