Trying to calm down an angry caller can be a frustrating and tricky task. You want to ensure you are saying the right things and leaving that interaction with a satisfied customer that will continue to do business with you. Here are five ways to deal with an irate caller:
Listen To Caller And Identify The Problem
People tend to launch into rants when they’re angry. Among all the opinions and anecdotes being thrown at you is an underlying issue. Make sure to identify what it is. If you are unable to decipher it, you can say, “I understand that you’re frustrated, I want to make sure I can assist you. Can you tell me exactly what the issue is that you are experiencing?” Once you believe you know the problem, be sure to confirm with the customer by rephrasing it as a question. You can say, “What I hear you say is that you have not received an ETA from our tech team, is that correct?” Understanding the customer’s issue is a critical first step in calming the customer down as you try to solve the problem.
Empathize And Apologize To The Customer
Whether the issue is your fault or not does not matter. You need to own the problem and apologize to the customer. You can say, “I completely understand your frustration, and I certainly apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.” Taking responsibility with a simple apology often goes a long way in disarming the customer and calming them down.
Reassure The Customer You Will Help
Next, you must reassure the customer that you will help them. You can say, “I’ll be more than happy to assist you with this problem.” You want to say this confidently, even if you aren’t sure how you’ll tackle the issue just yet. The customer needs to trust that you will help them. If you need some more time, offer a call back with a resolution. Make sure that the caller is comfortable with the time frame and follow up method that you are suggesting.
Solve The Customer’s Problems
If the issue deals with not getting the information they need, provide them with that information. Perhaps they are missing an item on their order? Expedite the shipping of the item to the customer. Did they have a bad interaction with one of your employees? Apologize, inform them the employee will be addressed accordingly and offer an incentive for their continued business.
Pro Tip: Once you have offered your solution, ensure that you recap with the customer and confirm if they are satisfied. You can say, “I did go ahead and provide you with (solution offered). Did I resolve all of your issues today?” This ensures that you don’t hang up with the customer and end up missing another concern that they had.
Thank The Customer
At the end of the day, an irate customer is just that, a customer. Customers like to feel appreciated, so make sure that you genuinely thank the customer with a smile. As a business, you are bound to deal with angry customers. Use these tools the next time you encounter one, and you will be sure to become a pro at it in no time!