Call handling service and out of hours call handling service are hard enough without dealing with difficult or angry customers. What’s the solution? Understanding and practicing customer-oriented attitudes and utilizing different approaches to customer service-based scenarios may help you get your job done to both your satisfaction and the satisfaction of the client. Resolving customer complaints is the bulk of the work for a customer service worker.
Call handling service and out of hours call handling service are the a-to-z process of managing phone calls. It is every step your organization takes when a call comes in or when placing an outgoing call.
Why should every company invest in improving its call handling service and out of hours service?
Excellent call handling service can make the difference between a positive and decidedly negative customer experience and reviews. Unfortunately, many companies lack the resources to ensure high-quality call handling services, especially out of hours call handling services. Most companies aren’t familiar with call handling do’s and don’ts and don’t even recognize a problem until it’s too late.
Phone calls may look like an old-school customer service channel, but they’re as important today as ever. More people are calling businesses than at any other time in history. 65% of potential customers want to reach brands by phone, and 80% of customers say the company’s experience is as valuable as its products and services. Also, 93% of customers are more likely to make repeat purchases with companies that offer excellent customer service.
How do call handling and out of hours call handling service work?
Call handling service takes numerous forms. It varies across every business based on its size, location, customer base, operating hours, technological capabilities, and sales and support strategies. Call answering, and handling techniques can range in complexity from an in-house receptionist to a live virtual receptionist service (like Incus!) to a large call center operation with conversational scripts.
Meanwhile, an out of hours call handling service means your clients can speak to a person about something related to your business even when you aren’t available. Given that many people would still rather talk to a person than send an email, this is an important feature to offer.
Call handling services and out of hours call handling services: Seven advice to dealing with demanding clients
No matter how your client is difficult, the advice to manage them is somehow the same. Here is what we recommend for you to calm the waters or a turbid client relationship.
#1 Stay calm (or rant in private)
During your call handling service, you might have dealt with angry clients. Even if a client is screaming down the phone, even though you are offering an out of hours handling service, you’ve got to remain calm. But, if you stoop to their hostility level, you will put your business’s reputation in danger. You can get your point across much clearer with a calm voice and stern demeanor. The psychology of human interaction states that people often mirror the emotional signals of the person they are talking to emit. When you’re angry, you’ll usually make them angrier. But if you are calm, you may encourage them to be calm, too.
#2 Listen to their concerns.
Often, in a particular stage of call handling service, a difficult client might just want to be heard. Only taking the time to listen to their problems without getting defensive could be all that’s needed to solve the issue. Ensure your client understands that you’re focused on their situation (even if it’s an imaginary problem). Repeat their statements back to them, ask follow-up questions, and acknowledge that you have heard and understood. According to Anita Ferguson from the Balancing Books website, it is best to ask for specifics. When clients feel their queries or concerns are not being handled, they usually fall into language like “nothing’s working” or “everything’s wrong!”
#3 Deliver a prompt reply during the call handling service
Do you know what doesn’t help calm a problematic client during an out of hours call handling service? Time passage. In this case, time cannot solve everything. So, as soon as a customer raises a problem, make it a priority. When you do this, you validate the customer. You are not accepting blame (and you should try to avoid saying you are sorry at this stage), but you are establishing good communication from the start.
#4 Figure out what is the problem
Client issues often arise when they have expectations that align with the service you deliver. That might happen when communications issues have made them believe one thing when the opposite is true. Talk to the relevant parties in your company, check the records to find out where things went wrong (if they did go wrong), and how you might improve processes or communication in the future.
#5 Call handling service and out of hours call handling service should offer a solution.
Again, this isn’t about admitting you are mistaken (in many cases, you won’t be) but about finding a way to solve the client’s problem without losing your head in the process.
If you’re in the wrong, admit it up front, and show the client how you will solve the situation and get their project back on track. If the customer is in the wrong, then point to the relevant clauses in their contract or letter of agreement, and explain that you are happy to wipe the slate clean, but with a detailed outline of what they can expect from here.
#6 At the end of the call handling service, you might have to cut your losses
According to Ryan Holmes, Hootsuite CEO, finding a problematic client solution will often cut into your bottom line. At the end of a demanding customer’s job, you may end up without any profit for all your efforts.
However, your reputation and integrity are more vital than your bottom line. Fixing the problem, even if that solution comes at a loss, will benefit you in the long-term. For instance, your previously-demanding client may turn into a fiercely loyal client and very excited to tell all their partners how you went the extra mile.
Sometimes, you won’t fix an issue, and you’ll have to terminate a problematic client. That can be heartbreaking (mainly if it is the first client relationship that has gone sour), but if you keep your dealings professional, you will come out stronger and smarter.
#7 Review and learn from both out of hours call handling service and call handling service
After the call handling service has come to an end with a client, take a moment to evaluate what happened. You should ask yourself:
- What was the cause of this problem?
- Is there anything you could have done to stop it?
- What lessons have you learned that you can keep in mind in the future?
There may be simple solutions, like clarifying communications, changing workflow processes, and re-wording contracts to prevent a repeat situation. Also, having a sense of humor about the experience will help you pull through.