When it comes to customer support, one has to deal with thousands of complicated situations on a daily basis. During every customer interaction, it’s not only important for you to start and keep the conversation going but also resolve the customer issue in a timely manner.
With customer satisfaction heavily depending on the interaction, you have to make sure that you stay supportive and courteous all along while resolving an issue or providing the needed details to the customer. Further, it is essential that you meet their expectations and resolve the issue on a good note.
Being a support agent can be challenging as you have to
– adjust to the moods and needs of different personalities
– find a solution and come up with answers in a short period of time
– be stress-resistant
Coping with these challenges include dealing with difficult situations and difficult customers. Here’s a quick guide on how to go about it and strike a positive chord with your customers.
Dealing with Angry Customers
Every customer who contacts support tends to be in an irritable mood as they experienced difficulties with the product. They complain about the discomfort and express anger and dissatisfaction over the issue. The best way out of such situations is to empathize with the customer and listen to them carefully without interrupting. Here’s a short to-do-list on how to cope with angry customers:
– Apologize and accept responsibility. You are the first person they talk to from the company and the way you interact will leave an unforgettable impression.
– Stay calm and listen attentively to what they say as it will help you create a list of specified questions to resolve the problem and form a detailed picture.
– Don’t get upset or emotional. You need to have a balance between interpreting and guiding a customer through this conversation.
Lack of Solution or Experience
There is a stereotype on the job market that support jobs are easy and require no skills. This is not true. In fact, one of the main responsibilities of every customer support agent is to be tech savvy and have expertise in the product they do support for. Support agents will only be able to provide the right solution if they have learned all the details about the operational process, development stage, new updates, and releases.
As a customer support agent, you need to figure out a better solution for your client. That’s why a lack of solution or no answer from your side makes you look unprofessional. While the best tools for this case are time and practice, this action list can aid you further in such situations:
– Do not show your bewilderment and discomfort, as it is a sign of your incompetence and leaves a bad impression.
– If you are new to this field, make it a habit to listen attentively and collect as many details about the issue as possible. Later, ask your customer to hold the line but make sure to reply fast.
– While your customer is waiting, there are three ways out: run a quick search, ask for guidelines from your teammates, or transfer the call to a more experienced agent.
– If you do have to transfer the call, provide the next agent with all the details. Customers hate when they have to repeat their issue multiple times.
Placing a Customer Call on Hold
The most difficult part that every customer support agent faces is when they have to put the customer’s call on hold for a long time. There are two causes for this:
– Difficult troubleshooting that requires time and patience
– Negligence of job duties and causing disrespect to clients
In the first scenario, you can’t do much to speed up the process. All you can do is to wait and keep your client updated on what is going on. Try to inform them about all the process and actions that you are doing, like if you access their account or desktop remotely. Describe your actions out loud as it will be beneficial for both. You will remember the script and your customer will not just be hanging on the line but rather observe your involvement. Don’t make long pauses as the rule of a thumb in business is to close the loop. This means that you should answer in time to messages and requests. After all, customer support is all about effective communication.
In the second scenario, the problem can be solved with communication and collaboration with the team. A bad customer support agent is one who:
– is incompetent and rejects learning
– is overconfident and shows disrespect to clients
– neglects processing customer requests, such as filling in all the notes about the customer or describing the case.
Keep in mind to avoid making these mistakes. To be a great support agent you need to
– build trust with customers
– develop a strong impression for the services you provide
– promote your brand on the market
– get feedback and identify areas of improvement
Last but not the least
Now that you know how to handle difficult situations in customer support, don’t forget to finish your customer interaction with a nice, suitable goodbye. If you were able to help, thank them for the request and find out if there is anything else you can help with. If not, apologize for the inconvenience and promise them that this won’t happen again.