A go-to line for angry customers

When a customer calls and is upset about a product or service that fell short of expectations, resist the foolish choice to tell them what is in the hand book. Instead ask them what happened and how you can help. Let them talk. Don’t interrupt the customer. Be silent on the other end of the phone. Remain silent when getting invitations to engage in the confrontation. This is the customer trying to bait you into their emergency. Remember it is not your emergency but you are there to help seek clarity.

You may notice they will start going back in circles and telling the same story again. This is when you know the customer is done talking. When the time is right and it is your turn to talk, here is a go-to line that will help everyone win this interaction: “You are absolutely right. I can see why you are upset. If I were in your shoes I would be upset too.” When appropriate add an apology.

You have now validated the customer. Proceed with what you can do (not what you can’t do). This is the next line you use: “After hearing your story, I think we all want the same thing.”

Customers may not leave the conversation completely happy but they will leave knowing they have been heard and at least have clarity on what happened.

Don’t take what the customer has said to heart when they are upset. You have done all that you can. This product or service was just not meant for them and you have done what you can to fix it. No product or service is meant for every single person.