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10 Quick Tips for Customer Service Recovery

This week I wanted to write a quick blog that was digestible and helpful for those of you working on the front lines, who interact directly with customers every day.

Remember, if you’re not serving a customer you better be serving someone who is!


1.    Prepare – You must spend the time before you interact with a customer to learn and develop your skills in order to be competent enough to serve them, troubleshoot potential problems and develop solutions for them.

2.    Listen – Before you say anything to your customer YOU MUST LISTEN. Let them vent, let them describe their problem, and let them offer up a potential solution.

3.    Be Flexible –There’s no crystal ball to know how your customer wants to be served or the problems they have, but if you’re flexible you will be able to serve them in the best way possible.

4.    Be Calm – People feed off of one another’s energy. If your customer is already stressed out and worked up about a problem they have, being calm and collected is a good way to diffuse the situation rather than jumping into an argument with them.

5.    Acknowledge – Take the time to apologize and empathize with your customer for the problem at hand.  This will make them feel like they have been heard; regardless of if you’re able to give them exactly what they want in the end.

6.    Be Open –Be open to feedback from your customer and do not take personal offense to criticism you may hear.  If you listen and acknowledge your customer and are open to their constructive feedback, I guarantee you will both walk away from your interaction feeling much better about the outcome.

7.    Be Authentic – There is nothing worse than interacting with a fake person. Be real, be authentic and be genuine in each and every interaction.

8.    Be Truthful – This goes along nicely with being authentic.  Lying is the worst!  If you’re truthful, authenticity is much easier to achieve.

9.    Under Promise, Over Deliver – Sometimes it is hard to be truthful with a customer when you know you might not be able to give them everything they want, but I promise you that if you’re truthful, authentic and you under promise, they will be much more forgiving.  Then you will be able to surprise and delight them when you can over deliver!

10. Use HumorThis last tip might not apply to every situation, but whenever possible in service recovery, it is always fun to use humor to diffuse a stressful situation and will have your customer walking away with a smile on their face.

Hope these tips are helpful to you in your customer service and service recovery.  Please share your best service recovery tips in the comments!

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