10 tips for standing your ground with a customer who’s in the wrong (without alienating them)
It’s a cliché known far and wide: “The customer is always right.” Most business leaders understand this adage isn’t meant literally but is more a reminder to maintain a focus on meeting customers’ real needs. But experienced business leaders understand an additional truth: When a customer is wrong, they need to be allowed to “be wrong with dignity” — to feel heard, respected and well-treated.
An angry, frustrated customer may not have the facts on their side, but that doesn’t mean their feelings shouldn’t matter. It’s important not to allow a customer to mistreat you or your team members or to bully you into doing something that’s not in your business interests. But whenever possible, you should seek a resolution that maintains their respect for themselves and for you. Below, 10 members of Business Journals Leadership Trust share tips to help leaders stand their ground with a customer who’s in the wrong without alienating them.
Don’t let your emotions take over
If a customer makes a negative comment on social media or in an online review based on inaccurate facts, it’s especially important to promptly address the customer “with dignity” while setting the record straight. After all, this situation has the most potential to damage your company’s reputation in record time. A highly emotional review can easily gain traction and spin out of control. Get ahead of the situation and post your non-emotional, thoughtful response before that happens. Very briefly provide your side of the story by stating the facts, and avoid addressing any emotional content. Let the clearly stated facts speak for themselves. If the customer attempts to continue a negative conversation, send them a private message to request an offline dialog instead and disengage online. – Lincoln Jacobe, 6 Pillars Marketing
Read the entire article on bizjournals.com