Handling Angry Clients
What do you do when your client gets
mad at you? How do you handle this? An angry client
can be one of the biggest time and energy drains on
a sales person.
What you should specifically do will
obviously depend on what the client is angry about.
Sometimes our clients have a legitimate reason to
be angry, such as when we screw up. Other times clients
get unreasonably upset because they have different
expectations about your business relationship.
n either case, your objective should
be to make the client happy again (unless your client
is so unreasonable that you need to let them go).
The first step towards converting
an angry client to a happy one is to get in rapport
with your client while he is angry.
This approach may sound a little weird
to you. It works though, and you'll realize its true
once you reflect upon your own experiences with anger.
Ever been mad at a company, or another person, or
a politician for example? When you were angry, how
did you feel when you spoke to someone who didn't
share your anger? You felt misunderstood, maybe even
to the point where you didn't want to be around them,
Now think about how you felt when
you encountered someone who shared you anger. You
felt understood and wanted to be around this person
more, didn't you?
People fundamentally want to be around
others who are like themselves. We seek this all the
time in all of our dealings with others. And when
our mood change, we often want to be around people
who are experiencing the same thing.
So then, how do you get in rapport
with an angry client?
The simplest and fastest way is to
match their mood, while being careful not to match
the content of what they are saying. You do this by
getting yourself into an emotional state similar to
the client. This may be anger, frustration, or whatever
word you think best describes their mood. The word
label doesn't really matter. You can observe the client's
mood, and you know how to create a similar feeling
inside of yourself whatever the name.
Remember I also said not to match
the content of what the client is saying. This is
very important. In other words, you don't want to
say nasty things to your client just to match them.
Yes this will get you into a similar mood as them,
and yes you will be in rapport. But only briefly as
you watch their anger skyrocket out of control.
Instead what you want to do is say
something to let them know that you are going to try
rectify the situation that caused the anger. You tell
them something like this:
"Jack, I know you are upset.
I am upset that this situation has gotten you upset.
I am going to get to work right away on..."
And remember to say this from a mood
that matches their anger or frustration. Don't be
all nice and comforting in your tone of voice. If
you do, you'll just make them madder because they
won't feel understood.
Mood matching is something you do
often with friends, family and many prospects already.
You just do it so automatically that you don't always
notice it. By choosing to match someone, you give
yourself greater influence with your clients and prospects.
By matching moods and getting in rapport with an angry
client, you will have greater influence over the future
of the relationship.