Customers today are going digital and if you want your customers to come back again, you must exceed their expectations consistently. When it doesn’t happen you end up with a complaint.
A typical business hears about nearly 4% of its dissatisfied customers, where as 96% go away quietly.
A complaining customer is trying to help you understand where you failed and where you need to improve. You should be thrilled and excited that the customer cares for your business. The good news is that more than 75% of the complaining customers will do business with you again if the complaint is resolved in their favor. More than 95% of customers would love to do business with you again, if the complaints are resolved instantly.
Handling customer complaints is an important part of keeping the business healthy and profitable. If the complaints are not resolved on time, they may turn into conflicts and may spoil the reputation of your company. Companies who fail to address and resolve the conflicts can leave a negative impact on customer retention, brand awareness and loyalty. Most of the conflicts can be resolved at initial stages by providing quality help desk service.
Here are top 7 conflict resolution tips for excellent help desk support that help you avoid and resolve conflicts at early stages before they spoil the relationship between you and your customer.
1. Don’t react
It is human tendency to react or respond to angry comments from customer. You should remember that customers want to voice their opinion and they expect the help desk agents to listen. Even if the customer is aggressive or talking rude, you should listen with patience and interject with helpful redirection when appropriate.
2. Recognize differing perspectives
Keep in mind that conflicts may arise between people due to different perception. Being a help desk agent, you should understand their issues and try to see things from the point-of-view of customer. Try to agree with what the customer is saying about, as an agreement will result in co-operation and collaboration.
3. Use timeouts
If the customer becomes frustrated, annoyed and is going out of control, give them the opportunity to think themselves for short periods. This helps you to address their concerns effectively. If there is something wrong with your products or services, admit it and take the responsibility.
4. Use silences
When customers talk, listen to them carefully rather than interrupting. Summarize the main point, once your customer has stopped talking. This will help both of you to work together on a solution. Set time limit and end the interaction, when the customer refuses to act constructively. Listen for understanding, as irate callers just want someone to listen to their story, even if you are unable to help them.
5. Ask questions
A super way to provide top quality customer service is to ask questions. Know what the customer is talking about. Listen to the customer’s concerns carefully and try to as many as questions before coming to a conclusion. Though some customers get irritated with your questions, it will help you understand their problem. You will be able to help him find better solution. Ask questions to find facts and feelings, rather than preparing your response.
6. Thank the customer
Thank the customer for raising the concern, as he/she want you to improve your services. Emphasize the importance of satisfied customers to you and your organization. This will help you to resolve the conflicts or complaints at first stage itself. Be genuine and show your personality by responding as an understanding friend rather than citing policies.
7. Set expectations
It might not be possible for help desk agents to solve each and every issue of the customer. It becomes important to set expectations with the customer. If you have to escalate the issue, make sure that the customer understands the next step.
Implementing the best practices will save a lot of time and trouble during conflict resolution. Processes that are aligned with the best practices help you communicated better with your customers and reduce costly escalations. By implementing knowledge base practices, all the changes are routed through IT help desk which allows you to prevent unauthorized changes.
Help desk agents can use the above conflict resolution tips to resolve most of the issues before they impact the company. In the world of help desk, messages and tickets can become confused with incorrect information. The result is always poor customer service and a sense that their technical needs are not fulfilled. It is critical that each member of your help desk team knows their role and how they are supposed to convey message to the customer.
The bottom line is – great work relationships depend on the way you communicate right information at right time. By developing great communication skills, you will build a better and more trusting relationship with your customers, which will result in improved efficiency within your help desk agents.