Interpersonal Communication -Handling Difficult Callers (ICP 110)

callers

How should I handle a situation with an angry caller? A caller’s anger represents an emotional response to a particular circumstance. Your top priority when faced with such situations is to stay calm while determining the real source of the anger.

There are five steps you should take when handling a situation with an angry caller:

Remain calm: You should always be patient and remain calm when dealing with an angry caller. Regardless of how hot-tempered or rude a caller becomes, you must stay relaxed and even-tempered. A good way to maintain a friendly and professional attitude is by focusing on the positive aspects of the situation and telling the caller what you can do for them.

Let the caller vent: When a caller has a problem and is upset, they want to express their feelings about the issue. When a caller is venting, do not interrupt no matter how badly you may want to. Breaking in while the caller is venting will do nothing but further anger them. Allowing a caller to vent shows that you are willing to acknowledge that there is a problem.

Express empathy: Once you give the caller a chance to vent, you can begin to participate more actively in the conversation. Sincerely expressing empathy about the caller’s problem is the best way to calm them down. This does not mean that you have to agree with the caller, but just appreciate and understand their feelings.

Identify what went wrong: Expressing understanding without developing a solution is ineffective. After you empathize with the caller, you should begin actively solving their problem by identifying what went wrong. Ask questions that will help you clarify the cause of the problem. Actively listen to the caller’s answers and confirm that you understand them correctly by repeating the information back to them. Repeating what the caller tells you allows you to double check the facts, verify your understanding of the situation, and make sure you have adequate information to solve the problem.

Develop a solution: When you feel you have all of the facts surrounding the situation, help the caller find a solution to their problem. Offer the individual a variety of options that will address their problem, and determine what option will give the caller the most satisfaction.

 

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