Why Handle Complaints Appropriately? • Customers that have had an issue resolved efficiently and professionally are more loyal. • Important to gain and retain a customer through superior customer serviceand build a strong clientele. • Customers spend money --- even the difficult ones. • Professionally handling situations can lead to customer referrals. People talk! • Positively impact on the company’s image. • All of the above contribute to companyprofits.
Appropriately handling customer complaints • Should be immediate • Should be effective • Should offer customer satisfaction • Should follow company policy • Should follow company procedure
Develop Company Policy • Company policy • Policies are general rules followed by personnel to address many types of situations that may occur • Most businesses have these rules in writing • Following these rules usually solves the problem • Company Policies • Help avoid misunderstandings • Apply fair and consistent treatment of customers • Policy goals should be targeted towards customer satisfaction • Example: Many companies have a written policy that forbids their employees from physically stopping or chasing suspected shoplifters.
Develop Company Procedures • Company Procedures • Step by step instructions for personnel to follow. • Designed to achieve a positive result. • Cooking recipes are good examples of procedures.
Procedures for Handling Complaints Before handling the difficult customer: • Recognize type of difficult customer and handle the situation accordingly • Use appropriate techniques for working with that type of difficult customer to handle needs/wants
Procedure for Handling Complaints • Listen to customer • Determine the reason for the complaint • Thank the customer • Restate the complaint • Investigate the problem • Key to making sure the complaint is justified • Explain company policy • Ex: No Returns after 30 Days • Saying “Not company policy” is NOT an option • Take action • Resolve the issue • Satisfy the customer! • Must be done according to company policy
Skills Needed to Handle Complaints • Interpersonal (Interacting with People) skills: • Remain calm and in control of emotions • Express patience and flexibility • Listen completely and openly • Be Courteous and sincere • Provide honest and helpful information • Be respectful of the customer needs • Do not be condescending
Skills Needed to Handle Complaints • Communication skills • Speak softly and slowly • Use proper grammar and English and pronounce words correctly and clearly • Listen and respond but do not interrupt customer • Ask appropriate questions to understand issue • Maintain eye contact to show interest