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Dealing with Difficult Customers

It's vital to let an angry customer vent their feelings while you give them your full attention. You may feel compelled to interrupt as they recount what transpired but don’t, let them continue.

In-person, make eye contact, be alert and show empathy nodding from time to time.

Even if the customer is irrational over the phone, make the occasional indication that you’re listening and empathizing, even just a sympathetic o sound.

If you want to raise an issue leave it until they’ve finished, perhaps making notes as they speak.

Let your customers vent all of their anger in one burst after which you can focus on the solution and when they have finished speaking or shouting, leave a second or two of silence and make your initial response an empathetic one. “Mr. Jameson, I hear exactly what you are saying.”


Allowing the customer to get it all out of their system reinforces the fact you’ve listened intently and almost certainly will have a full understanding of their complaint.

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