Manage The Call
Frustrated callers can come in many different shapes and sizes. Some may be angry about the service your company provided or some may just be having a bad day. Regardless of where the frustrations come from, there are specific things you can do to manage the call and keep your peace.
Here are a few quick tips you can apply whilst on the phone with an angry caller.
Time To Explain
Give the caller time to explain their frustrations while you listen and take notes. Be attentive to the call and pay particular attention to relevant facts that you may ned to refer back to. Listen out for clues as to why the customer is so frustrated.
Even if you haven’t personally done anything to cause the caller’s frustrations, make a corporate apology. This means saying sorry for the actions of your company or the general circumstances surrounding the persons grievance.
I’ve worked in a high street bank and as a financial complaint handler. I’ve dealt with my fair share of crazy, angry and sometimes psychotic customer calls…. What I’ve found is that a gentle, composed and tolerant tone is extremely useful to calm the customer down. No matter how irate they may get, don’t respond with frustration.
Control The Call
Take control of the call by summarising why they are unhappy and asking them what they would like to happen to resolve their issue. Stay calm and explain what steps you can take to help them with a resolution.
Make A Plan
Once the call is over, create a mini written action plan detailing what you will do next to help the customer. Share this with your manager where appropriate so they are in the loop.
Take A Break
Take a five-minute break away from your desk if the call was particularly challenging. This will give you some breathing room to clear your mind. Don’t take the call personally. The caller is not frustrated with you but their own circumstances.