How to deal with CUSTOMER COMPLAINTS


So we were having a meeting about branding and social media and our online presence for one, or for… and I got reception come to me in a bit of a panic, a little bit, had went a little bit white because we had a rather angry customer in reception that was being a little bit volatile, now I don’t mean – or aggressive – I don’t mean going to the point where they were shouting and swearing, but they were rather animated – felt I was the best person to deal with it because I was the most senior person in the office at that time and on the way round the person impressed upon me that this person was ‘really angry, Scott, please be prepared because, you know, you don’t know what you’re gonna be faced with, sort of thing, and so I went round to see the client, and rightly so, a client had came in – now the story of why he came in is quite interesting in terms of how human beings actually come to conclusions but we’ll come back to that – the point was is the chap was wanting to cancel his order, he was being aggressive or very direct – the fact that he was pointing a lot in my face, he was raising his voice and we had to deal with the situation. Mr ____, I’m on your side here – I’m
happy to get this cancelled for you, if you want, but there’s a proper procedure for it which we need to follow, so let me get some details, and he kept pointing at me – my face, like… Well, he was like that, ‘no, listen, just cancel it’, like that, so I said, ‘Mr ____, see if you point at me one more time, I’m cancelling the meeting – I’m happy to help you out, I’ve got a procedure to follow let me do so’, so eventually he went, ‘oh, right, okay’, and he knew I was serious at this point – he assumed that he was being conned, and you have to be understanding of that – he thought he had been wronged in this whole process. Instead of just going into how he hadn’t, I didn’t do that – what I done is I made him understand that his sister had given him information which was inaccurate and actually when he really – when I then broke it down to him and because I did have product knowledge in how the market works, when I chatted to him about his sister and how it works in England and Wales is different from Scotland and these are the differences and she’s probably basing the fact that she’s been down there for 20 years, her knowledge is maybe based on the way of doing it in England, and then should know how we do in Scotland, and when you break the cost up, we are a commercial business. You’re right, you can do it yourself, but we charge you, in his case probably the equivalent of about 150 pound each because we then do it – the rest of the money that he was charged was made up in government fees – I mean I wrote that down and I wrote it down for him as well and showed him that, yeah, we will be making about two hundred and fifty pounds – three hundred pounds for doing your mother’s documents, but we’re a company and I don’t think that’s excessive, when we’re making your life significantly easier and to the point where we bring the documents back to him and help him and his mum sign it, we’re gonna get one of our solicitors to phone, and get it signed – when I built up the value now that he actually attached to it was increased – it’s just that his his sister decreased the value, because she said that you can get it for half price. There’s a fine balance when it’s customer services about when you have to be strong with a client, and when you have to kind of just lie down to them and accept it – take it on the chin, almost, if you’ve actually done wrong and at this point I didn’t know whether the service was good or bad, but obviously there’s no need for like like to be aggressive and start pointing in your face on the second or third time, so he stopped that, so listen to your clients, know when to take control of the situation or putting your foot down, and then finally really listen to the problem, really understanding what the problem is and then make sure the client is fully aware of what – the way it actually is, that actually is good value, breaking it down and letting them see the value is in it again and reaffirming that there, because it wasn’t about money, there was no point reducing the price – it was just about explaining to him explicitly what was involved and what was entailed and what he got – he then seen the value, and he’s away home now thinking he’s a plonker, but happy, so…

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