What Not to Say to a Customer 

Even the best of us can get caught up in the heat of a conversation. Dealing with customers who refuse to pay their bills can be a very frustrating job, but here are four things that no customer wants to hear.

Using the term “Have to”

No customer wants to be told what to do. It is important to be firm on your position and make the customer know where you stand, but demanding a customer do something rarely compels them to change their mind. Call it human pride, but people want to feel like they have a choice and are complying on their own accord, not because they have to. An alternative to this would be to give your customer different options of what they can do. Even if all these options are similar or equally harsh, giving the customer a choice always helps.

Anything that suggests you or bored or do not care.

This may be your 100th call of the day, but to your customers it is their livelihoods. It is important they feel like you care and are not simply trying to get paid. A little compassion can sometimes go a long way.

Using the term “policy”

Nothing will annoy a customer more than if you say “well I wish I can do that, but its against our policy”. It sounds like you are giving them the run-a-round and do not really care. Always try to offer alternatives and focus on what you can do for them. Try to make it seem like you are on their team and are fighting for them as much as you can.

Yelling or taking out your frustration on them

Getting angry and screaming at a customer almost never helps. While a customer may frustrate you, it is always important to keep a level head and work with them. Yelling and screaming will simply impede or ruin any progress that has been made on the account. You should remain firm and professional in your conversations, whether that be over email, on the phone, or in person.

Obviously there is not a one size fits all policy when it comes to collecting debt and in some cases these tactics may be necessary, but overall these practices should be avoided. It is almost always better to work with your customer than against them.

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