Let’s face it. If you work with the public, you’re going to have your share of annoying clients. These are clients who have problems making up their mind, always have a complaint about everything or always have a negative outlook on everything. Sometimes, these types of clients make you feel like throwing in the towel and going the opposite direction from them. But, you come to your senses and admit that it’s in your best interest to win the client over. With that in mind, the challenge to maintain the working relationship comes to the forefront. So, here are a few tricks you can consider for clients you wish to continue a relationship with and not have to go off on the deep end to do it.
Acknowledge a Major Personality Conflict
Make no mistake about it, some people you just won’t be able to work with, and that’s fine. So instead of beating a dead horse, locate another part of your team that can address the issue. To show the customer that quality service is your top concern, you might want to ask the client to identify the person he or she would like to work with instead of you.
Choose Your Words Carefully
Make sure that the language you speak reflects the type of communication you are getting from your client. By now, you should have a familiarity with how your client talks to get things done. Be mindful of this as you choose your response so your client feels comfortable with communicating with you.
Use Visual Cues to Your Advantage
This trick is ideal for getting off-task clients to focus about the conversation. Make notes on an iPad or notebook, and go back to reflect on each point. If the customer returns to a point already resolved, just point to the notes, remind them that the issue is already taken care and shift to the next point.
When clients address issues using generalized language, make it a point to redirect them by having them specify that their problem is using an actual example or scenario. By allowing them to provide a more specific scenario, you are at a better advantage in being able to develop measurable outcomes for solving the problem. If the overall point is just to be negative in general, this trick will dismiss the complaint instantly.
Acknowledge, Don’t Agree
Sometimes, it backfires when you try to agree with a complaining client. So instead of merely agreeing, let the client know you understand they have a problem. Then shift the conversation from acknowledging there’s a problem to dialog on ways to solve the problem that works for everyone involved.
Pinpoint the Outcome
Always take into consideration the overall goal of your clients when dealing with them. That way, you won’t waste time putting your energy into dealing with insignificant issues that have no impact on the result.
Cut Them Loose
If you’ve done all you can do with no resolution seeming possible, then it’s time to let it go. Just remember that when doing so, the client will most likely go to your competition. Hopefully, if you consider some of the previously mentioned tricks, you won’t have to make this decision too often.