Communication Training Customer Service Tactic: How to Deal with that ANGRY customer

Angry or emotional customers--customer service training--communication skills

When angry or emotional customers are out of control

When communicating with angry or emotional customers, many of us try to calm them down by slowly, clearly, and logically telling them how we can help them with whatever technical issue they’re having. Basically, we speak to the logical side of their brain, when they’re speaking from the emotional side of their brain.

Don’t do that!

QUICK TIP: When someone is speaking to you from emotion, you have to speak first to that emotion before speaking to logic. The professional, powerful communicator knows to match the level of emotion with a different emotion. What that means is, if they’re very upset, you can be very empathetic. If they’re very angry, you can be very concerned.

Same level of emotion, but a different emotion.

Emotional people want us to be emotional too. Before they can get “un-stuck,” they want to see that they have hooked us emotionally somehow. That’s how people are.

So, show people that you are emotional along with them, and that helps them get “un-stuck.” THEN you can speak to the logical side of the brain, and start solving the problem. Just remember, you can’t get logical information through an emotional brain. Speak first to emotion, then to logic.

Some simple power phrases you can use to do this are things such as, “Wow, I can see how upset you are, and I don’t blame you a bit.” Or, “I can see how angry you are, and after what you just told me, I’m surprised you’re not even more upset.” Or, “Well, I don’t blame you for being upset, and I’m glad you brought this to me, because I’m the right person.”

Put phrases like these into your own words, and watch what happens when you use them to respond, rather than react, the next time you have to provide customer service to (or communicate with) an emotionally charged or angry customer.

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Dan O’Connor has been leading the communication training industry for more than 20 years. Through his bestselling books, his #1 rated YouTube channel, and his online courses, Dan transforms the global conversation and the lives of countless individuals every day.

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