It’s so easy to get frustrated with customers when doing support. Makes you feel a bit like this guy.
That’s when you’ve got to stop and back away from the computer. Take a break. If you don’t, tempers will flare and you’ll miss something in your quest to fix their problem.
The missing items
In my last job, I had a customer who was arguing with one of our team members. The customer was yelling through the phone about some missing items from their catering order. And I mean yelling – you could hear them through the phone from a few feet away.
I picked up the other phone and jumped on the same line to listen in on the conversation. I saw our team member getting frustrated because they couldn’t even get a word in edge wise. As soon as they got a break in the yelling, they calmly asked for the customer to hold for just a moment so he could double-check something.
When he put the customer on hold, I looked at him with that “What are you doing?” look. He looked up and just said, “I’ve got to take 30 seconds. Otherwise, I’m going to lose my cool and say the wrong thing.”
He picked back up the phone and before he could say anything, the customer started to apologize. Turns out the missing items were actually there. Then we found out the customer was rushing to get the catering set for her meeting so she could get to the hospital to see her dad. It was just a bad situation that could’ve been a lot worse if not for that break.
Take a moment
When things go south with a customer, you’ve got to step back. Take a moment before you start on that email reply back to them. Walk around the block. Throw a frisbee with your dog. Make a cup of tea.
Do something to help you refocus.