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Tips for All of you In the Service Industry

July 21, 2013


Being a part of a restaurant opening is exciting, stressful, fun, scary, and a learning experience all at the same time.  I had a good night with the only rough spot being a couple of unhappy tables who required a bit of special attention.  In the end we as a staff won them over by being persistent problem solvers that showed them we were there to make them feel welcome and happy.  I found the information listed below this morning and have chosen to copy and paste it here because it applies to every type of service situation.  In the end, a table of four went from being hell bent on canceling next Friday’s reservation for eight, to coming back with a request for my presence at their table.  I’m not the best at what I do, I just keep trying to get better.  Farmhouse Evanston is officially in its second week of operation and we open for lunch this Wednesday.  Come check out the newest, most unique restaurant concept on the North Shore and support the localized food movement.

703 Church Street
Evanston, IL 60201


10 Steps to Transformation

Take customers from angry to appreciated with these tips:

1. Switch your thinking from dealing with a complaint to handling a concern. Behind your customer’s anger is likely a legitimate concern that you can help him with. Focus on the concern and a solution will come more easily.

2. Thank them for their concern. It may seem strange to thank someone who is ranting at you, but he is giving you the chance to make things right, rather than moving his business down the street. And that definitely deserves a thanks!

3. Listen to your customer, paying attention to body language, tone and (of course) what he tells you. Reiterate his concern to be sure you have the gist of the problem down and to prove you were listening to him.

4. Empathize with his frustration. We’ve all been in situations where we have been angry with a company. Let your customer know that you have been in his shoes and you understand his feelings.

5. Apologize when appropriate. Sometimes, mistakes happen. If this was a legitimate mistake by your company, apologize to your customer for the error and subsequent inconvenience and frustration.

6. Stay calm and courteous throughout. It is easy to get defensive when you feel like you are being attacked, but raising your voice or changing your tone will only serve to enrage your customer further.

7. Reassure your customer that you will find a solution to the problem. Let him know that you will be his point of contact until that resolution is complete.

8. Find that solution. Do not play the blame game or pass the buck. Just fix it for your customer.

9. Follow up. Want to make an angry customer even angrier? Drop the ball before you get a resolution to his concern. If you are serious about transforming this customer, you will need to see the problem through to its final outcome. If you need to involve others in the issue, follow up with those people to ensure the job gets done in a timely fashion.

10. Go the extra mile. Here is where the real transformation begins. Once you solve the problem, your customer is satisfied. By adding something extra, a discount on a next visit, a follow-up card in the mail or another token of appreciation, you get a customer who is truly delighted.

Angry customers are a challenge for any company, but the good news is there are effective strategies for dealing with these difficult situations. With these 10 steps, most of your angry customers will transform into delighted, loyal customers who will return to your business and even tell others about your winning service attitude.

– Meredith Estep

From → For Good Health

One Comment
  1. Great steps for happy clients!

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