While nobody likes negative customer experiences or complaints, they're a necessary reality for any business owner.
How you handle your customer complaint management can make or break your business's dignity and reputation.
Learn how to navigate this tricky gray area with ease and comfort. Let's get into it!
Suspend Your Emotions
Of course, nobody likes being criticized or attacked. You're probably no exception, especially when it comes to your business's reputation. In fact, it's human nature to become defensive in these kinds of situations.
With that said, if you act out disgracefully, you risk facing a PR disaster. You also risk looking incredibly immature and ignorant.
If you feel yourself getting hot when a customer starts getting escalated, practice the Zen art of active listening and mindfulness.
When you can put yourself in your customer's shoes, it's a lot easier to feel empathic and compassionate (rather than furious) at their personal situation.
Did you screw up? It's okay. You're not perfect.
Fortunately, that's not what matters. What matters is your willingness to acknowledge your part and your wrongdoing.
Even if you genuinely believe you did nothing wrong, continue practicing empathy. This will help you better identify your customers' emotions and ideally see where they are coming from.
Thank Them For Their Honesty
Again, this requires suspending your emotions and your pride. However, solid customer complaint management is built on putting customer satisfaction first.
By thanking customers for honestly voicing their complaints or problems, you create an open channel for communication.
Doing this can also help diffuse the situation, as it shows that you are empathic and understanding of their situation.
Remember, healthy communication is easy when everyone's cordial, but it's probably most important when there's tension.
Find a Solution
As a business owner, it's your job to ensure that your product or service successfully fills your customer's particular needs.
Didn't work out so well? It will happen from time to time. See what you can do (within reason) to remedy the situation. If you don't call those shots, find the person who does, and collaborate to rectify the tension immediately.
While you won't be able to please everyone, customers are often happy and impressed by a willingness to acknowledge and fix wrongdoings.
Offer a Follow-Up
Customer angry with your services? Did you fix the problem and leave them going their happy way? Great! But, you're not off the hook yet.
Show exceptional customer service skills by offering a solution and a follow-up. Ideally, you want to do this within 24-48 hours after the interaction. Any sooner than that will feel like overkill.
It's best to have upper management follow-up and ask them their thoughts about how the situation was handled. If that's not practical, consider sending off a brief email thanking them for their understanding and support.
Final Thoughts on Customer Complaint Management
While nobody likes dealing with disgruntled customers, they are an unavoidable reality in any industry.
Ready to maximize your business solutions? Contact us today and let's get strategizing!