4 Ways to Handle an Angry Caller

It’s inevitable. As a call center representative, you will experience an angry caller once and again. The key is how you handle it. You’ve undoubtedly learned a few tips to have up your sleeve when you have these types of calls, but here are a few pointers to keep in mind.

You might consider writing a few of these down. Put them on a sticky note and have it next to the phone as a reminder. Always remember that management is there to help you. Never feel alone on a call that might make you a bit uneasy.

Here are 4 quick tips when an angry customer comes your way:

1. Understand why they are upset. Stay calm, show empathy and try to redirect the anger while getting to the root of the problem. Try not to take it personal – remember that it’s not about you, it’s about the situation they have found themselves in. If the caller is upset to begin with, remember sometimes all it takes is an understanding person on the other end of the line.

2. Breathe in, breathe out. Take a deep breath (but do not make an audible sigh) or a short break if you need to. If you find yourself getting upset, don’t be afraid to reach out. Take a few deep breaths and/or speak with a manager or coworker before the call gets too bad. If the call is so bad that you need to put it on hold, it might be time to escalate it to someone higher up.

3. Listen to their concerns. Nine times out of ten a caller just wants to be heard. Take the time to listen to the issue as long as they need you to, while figuring out the solution at the same time. Sometimes there is not a solution and all they needed to do was vent. Just listen and try not to get upset yourself.

4. Make up for what happened. If there’s a way to make the situation right, do it. Are there any tips you can suggest to avoid the issue in the future? Can you offer a refund? Sometimes all it takes is a small gesture to show that you care – even when the company is not necessarily wrong.

Remember that your manager is there to help. It’s ok to ask for assistance. Don’t do anything that you don’t feel comfortable doing and never jeopardize your job or comfort level to make someone happy. Good luck and have a great day!

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