3 Keys to Recovering from Customer Service Foul-ups
No matter how conscientious you are, sooner or later customer service foul-ups happen. These may be weather delays, supplier quality issues, or simple human error. When things go sideways, here are 3 keys to reducing stress and keeping customers:
- Own-it – don’t blame other departments, suppliers or your co-workers. You represent your company so take responsibility with words like, “This was our mistake.” Customers know that you personally may not be to blame, but they respect the fact that you’re taking responsibility.
- Empathize – use empathic statements like, “This sounds frustrating.”
- Apologize – say, “I’m sorry.” Even if the problem was due to weather delays, customers appreciate that someone – anyone – has expressed that they’re sorry it happened.
As I explain in my seminars, if the problem was indeed your fault, then also give customers something for the inconvenience. That way, they’ll become even more loyal than before the problem occurred.
Time between slipping on a peel and smacking the pavement: bananosecond.