Asking Customers to Clarify

When customers become upset, they won’t always communicate clearly and calmly, so reps may have to ask them to repeat themselves. Proceed with caution!

In the January issue of Customer Communicator, the training and motivation newsletter for frontline reps, Keith Bailey and Karen Leland, authors of Customer Service for Dummies, remind reps to make sure there is no hint of irritation in their voice.

They suggest that “if you need to ask your customers to slow down, or to repeat what they have said, do it with ’pleasant patience.’ Say, for example, ’I’m sorry, I didn’t catch that. Could you repeat it please?’ That works much better than, ’I can’t understand what you’re saying.’”

More on handling tricky situations with customers appears in the January issue of Customer Communicator.

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