Customer Service Training TIps

Three Words that Annoy Customers

On one of my speaking trips, an airline Gate Agent managed to frustrate a departure room full of passengers – using three words. He announced a short flight delay adding, “Please bear with us.” The phrase ‘bear with us’ implies that the customer is at best going to have to endure the service – not enjoy it. Worse, it sounds like giving the customer an order. Result – groans. When problems happen, better to express appreciation than give orders. The agent would have received a warmer reaction by explaining the short delay, replacing ‘bear with us’ with ‘thank you for your patience.’


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Jeff Mowatt is a customer service strategist, award-winning speaker, and best-selling author. To inquire about engaging Jeff for your team visit


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