From Complaint to Opportunity
- Listen to the customer’s complaint. The people who do business with us have made a commitment. Really hear what they say- often their comments are valid and this is an opportunity to improve your relationship and service.
- Take complaints seriously and act fast. Time is always of the essence. React and respond quickly and efficiently.
- Empower everyone in your organization to handle complaints. This is a perfect example that Customer service is not a department. It is everyone's job. Give everyone an opportunity to listen and learn from the customer problem. You may even hear solutions that you hadn't even considered before.
- Avoid focusing on fixing the blame. Just get it done. When you realize that the customer can go somewhere else and take precious referrals and opportunities for potential new business, you may remember the old adage, 'the customer is always right'. I heard once that when two people are in the room, there is only room for one ego. Let it be the customer. They will remember you and how you handled their problem.
- Let the customer suggest alternatives. They often will and many times it will be even less than what you were going to propose.
- Minimize the time between a complaint and when it is resolved. Stay on top of the situation checking in with your customer and whoever is handling the complaint to be sure that the resolution is a top priority.
- Trust in the customer’s sincerity and empathize with them. When we put ourselves in the other person's shoes, we see things in an entirely new light.
65% of our customers will not complain. They will just go away and we will never know why.