Vincy Workplace
May 7, 2010
Calming an angry customer Part 2

This article is a continuation from last week. The piece is written by George Bancroft and it’s being shared after my own experience being an angry customer.

Dispel Suspicion and Mistrust

Once you know the exact nature of the problem, you can start to build trust and develop a rapport with the customer.{{more}} Again, your attitude is the key to this turnaround in the customer’s attitude. If you convey sincerity and a genuine concern for helping the person, he or she will generally respond with a change of attitude.

If the person continues to be hostile and angry after you have taken all the steps we have talked about, you may be dealing with an irrational person, in which case you may never be able to resolve the problem.

On the other hand, if the person continues to be hostile, this can signal that you are dealing with someone who is attempting a ploy to gain a reason not to make a payment. The most effective way of telling if this is the case is to ask point-blank what the person wants you to do. If the customer mentions not making a payment, and you have not been able to establish a genuine problem, you are probably dealing with a ploy. The response to this type of person is a direct answer that says you cannot defer the payment but that you will investigate the problem and share your conclusions with him or her later.

Help the Customer Get What He or She Wants

If you are dealing with a true problem situation, your main task is to help the person get what he or she wants. It may be fine for you to simply straighten out the customer’s account and leave it at that, but if you are a bank and the mistake was a misdeposit of the customer’s money, you may have to write letters of explanation to companies that received cheques that bounced.

Be sure you understand fully what the customer wants you to do to resolve the problem so that you can leave him or her completely satisfied with how you handled the situation.

Establish a Commitment for Action

The last thing that you must do is tell the customer what action you are going to take to resolve the problem. This is a commitment by you to take action. It ends the problem and assures the customer that certain tasks will be completed within a defined time.

This is the process that you can use to solve the problems that you encounter. It is a simple, straightforward process that leaves no loose ends hanging, and it assures the customer that his or her problem will be resolved.

Karen Hinds is “The Workplace Success Expert.” For a FREE SPECIAL REPORT on Avoiding Career Killers in the Workplace, send an email to
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