Anyone who has worked in a call center knows the struggle of keeping customers happy, when they call you to voice their frustrations. Since, call center agents are the “front lines” in many cases, they generally get the rawest of customer emotions—the good and the bad.
Because “keeping your cool” is sometimes easier said than done, here are 5 steps to help call center employees turn a bad call into a good one.
While the ability to correct a negative customer service experience is good for business, even impressive, prevention still reigns supreme. The initial sales and service processes should be streamlined, especially through call center services, allowing for call center agents to resolve any doubts and concerns before the customer hopefully rides off into the sunset with a receipt in hand.
Prevention can be done through correct sales principles that are transparent and fair. Call center agents should be motivated by customer service and quality customer experiences before the goal of sales. These ideals are structured into sales goals and business principle long before issues arise. Business energy and resources used on prevention are always more effective than well-developed customer issue plans.
One challenge of customer service is the seeming endless amount of customer issues. While these issues may be in the hundreds a day for a customer service agent, they are singular to customers. Production and service procedures should drastically reduce product and experience concerns but there will always be issues in terms of getting it just right for customers, and that should always be your ultimate goal—getting it right for customers.
Listening in the customer service process is critical as you begin indicating the next step. Customers will tell you what they want, even if at times it sounds passive. Trust your customers to communicate what they want—they will.
Call center service agents should pay far more attention to what customer are saying and not saying, than how they are saying it. Customer will communicate a wide variety of things they want. Some will be outside of established company services or possibilities but strive to meet those needs. If anger or frustration is sensed, remember to listen to what they are saying. This will keep the customer service situation in the forefront. It is important to know that if a customer’s frustration becomes verbally abusive, the rep should understand how to end an abusive call.
What’s the difference you might ask? What is “be understanding,” and “show understanding?” There is a critical difference, especially in phone call and chat situations. While being understanding is the simple process of an agent understanding what the customers situation is—a basic step right? Showing understating is more of an art. It is the call center agent’s job to proactively communicate understanding through any means of communication, verbal, visual, and time.
Agents need to actively use phrases like “I understand your frustration with X product,” or “We can resolve your issue with two simple steps.” These types of customer service phrases actively communicate to the customer that you are not only listening but critically thinking about their individual situation.
“We understand your frustration Ms. Smith,” especially if it is sincere, will go a long way. While the ideal is to resolve the issue, this needs to be paired with adequate emotional response. Customers deserve empathy and understanding as well as resolutions.
The end all be all of a gone-south customer call or chat should be a profitable and fair resolution. Even the legal ideology of being restored to whole should be applied. Customers should be given what they, at the least, paid for. They should be provided with a whole product that will meet expected needs. Marketers spend tireless hours understanding the ranging differences in manufacture and consumer expectations. Doing all you can to provide for consumer expectations is the pinnacle of customer service.
All opportunities to follow up with customer should be taken advantage of. With access to digital customer records and receipt this can be achieved. Even within a customer service call, ROI Solutions representatives will follow up on the resolved issue and conversation. This will instill confidence and satisfaction into any caller.
Follow-up opportunities should be taken advantage of in regular business activities as well. Any recurring transaction and business should be utilized to get feedback and express appreciation for the continued business of returning customers and clients.
Trust your customer service and call center work to a well-established and trusted provider like ROI Call Center Solutions. Contact us today to learn more about turning your downward customer interactions into happy customers.