How to deal with difficult customers

Customer service is one of the most difficult and sensitive tasks and most direct impact on attracting clients. That’s why, the staff in these positions must meet certain requirements, without which their work is doomed to failure.

They must be intuitive and patient, affordable and friendly, close but professional, conciliatory but firm, knowing when a customer is right and admit it, or when it is a pose to achieve some goal that maybe doesn’t deserve. It is an art to make the job easier and a difficult customer a cost effective solution.dif clientsdifficult

As the consumer society has imposed and consumer rights have been extended, has emerged a new customer, with features, requirements and new expectations. It is not worth the old recipes of “we must treat others as we want them to treat us.” Today we have to treat the customer as he expects us to treat him.

The customer is becoming more demanding, less faithful, feels more protected-knows-your consumer rights and claims against public institutions. Trying this is the final step in our relationship with Him is the goal of every entrepreneur. Or at least it should be.

Let us see what are the most common models of this type of clients and some tips for dealing with them.

The angry customer
He comes to us with two objectives: to convey how the facts happened and express his feelings.
Do not get involved emotionally or put on the defensive. Go beyond anger.
Do not allow the client force you to promise things you can not keep.
Reach an agreement. It is not difficult if you use a simple question: “How would you like to solve the problem”? Negotiation thus simplifies.
Follow up. Finding a solution to the problem doesn’t mean that by that very fact the conflict is resolved, follow up until the client is satisfied.

The distant client
He is logical, non-intuitive, results-oriented. To make decisions he bases on experiences, so often requires written proposals. To deal with him all staff must know the product or service offered. Otherwise the client will not trust what you recommend him.
Show your ability to solve problems and your hability to resolve them. Show the customer that you have the knowledge and experience to meet the requirements he demands.

The non-conformist client
Fanatic of discussions. Anything you say he will immediately seek the opposite response. Every sentence you say will be accompanied by a NO, so do not allow yourself fall into this trap.
He is direct, does not need the details, just the benefits or what he should know before making a decision. He hopes that the person who assists him has the ability to solve problems and provide benefits.
Write down the agreed conditions and don’t contradict, better listen what the needs of the customer before offering any product or service. This is a maxim that should be used with all types of customer. You have to give him what the customer wants, not what we want to sell him.
Be patient. Such clients will almost never agree, so you should be tolerant, relax and listen.

Each client is different and there is always a non-conformist, controversial one, who does not listen, is distrustful and the disloyal. Now that you know their characteristics, could end the business relationship with them or know how to deal with them.

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Alicia Diaz
ALD Group – Virtual Assistance