Handling customer complaints

Handling Customer Complaints
Remaining Calm Under Pressure and improving your communication skills

This course explains how to stay calm under pressure, not to overreact, and how to remain professional when managing issues.

Customer expectations for attention, action, speed, quality, cost control and delivery have increased and customers complain when their expectations are not met. When customers complain it can be a very stressful experience and remaining calm under pressure is key to retaining long-term customer loyalty.

It is designed to challenge your beliefs in managing customers’ expectations of you and your organisation, whether they are internal or external customers. You will leave the course with a personal action plan identifying the key changes to make, and skills to practice, to ensure you stay calm at all times regardless of the pressure of the situation.

Who will benefit

If you are responsible for dealing with customer complaints (internal or external), then this course is for you. It will show you how to manage angry and demanding customers’ expectations and explain the tips and techniques to use to ensure that you stay calm throughout the whole process.

Key learning points:

By the end of this course participants will be able to:

  • Understand the impact you have on customers; negative and positive.
  • Understand the change in your thinking and behaviour that is required to manage complaining customers.
  • Recognise that it is important not to take complaints personally but to respond in a professional manner.
  • Establish rapport with angry and abusive customers, and resolve their complaint.
  • Appreciate the value to you and your customers when you remain calm and resist their pressure.

Course outline – Handling Customer Complaints

The course is very interactive and includes regular discussion, practice sessions and practical application to participants real-life situations.

Personal Impact on Customers

  • “I’m good at managing my customers”- self-analysis and questionnaire; review of pre-course task.
  • What do your customers think about you and your organisation? What do you want them to think?
  • The perception divide – “It’s entirely your fault!” Learning to see things from the other person’s viewpoint
  • How we can communicate more effectively using words, voice tone and body language in the correct way.

Managing Customer Complaints

  • Why customers complain and understanding both the logical and emotional elements of any communication.
  • Managing extremes of behavior and applying behavioural styles appropriate the situation and person you are communicating
  • Managing emotion through applying a two-step process and enhanced listening matching and questioning techniques

Managing Angry and Abusive Customers

  • Managing the issue and not the person using the GREAT FUN techniques with case study, practice sessions and group discussion.
  • Managing your customer’s emotion – using proven techniques to avoid escalations, calm any situation and resolve difficult conversations.
  • Staying calm under pressure: During and after any difficult communication, without taking things personally

Generating Customer Loyalty

  • Listening, acting and responding to customer needs using the PACES model.
  • Using assertiveness techniques to control manipulative behaviour and using the complaint to re-shape the ‘customer experience’.
  • Genuine, sincere and proactive customer service using the SPECIAL model.

Achieving Excellence in Customer Service

  • Best practice checklist to manage and resolve any complaint, disagreement or difficult conversation.
  • Your customer experience statement
  • Personal action plan