Author Topic: Responding to complaints  (Read 3905 times)

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Just Lori

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2013, 07:26:59 AM »
When I worked in retail, I found that most people backed down when I gave them permission to go off on me.  I know that sounds counterintuitive, but when a customer was upset about something, I'd tell them who could address their complaint and how to reach that person.  Then I'd say, "But if you need to vent your frustrations, feel free to vent on me."  That almost always took the wind out of their sails, because they realized how ludicrous it was to yell at a sales associate over something that was beyond our control.

SlitherHiss

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2013, 11:57:48 AM »
With the follow up information I think the original few poster's ideas on responses still work.  The complaint was still one your could acknowledge and emphasize with and then provide a solution (pay here, ask for reimbursement, directions to correct lot, etc.).

Reminbursement is not possible because the parking pass specifically stated exactly where to park at. Plus we were told that those parking passes were only valid at the parking garage stated on the pass.

The parking attendant let her know that her parking permit, which she took a picture of, was not valid at the parking garage both of us were working at. He let her know which garage she had to go to, and her gave her directions, but she did not want to go to that garage. She told both of us that we should have let her park at the garage we were working at for free and that he should have accepted the picture of the parking permit she took using her cell phone as proof. Neither were possible.

So what do you do as employees when you 1) tell a customer where to park at with their parking pass, 2) give them directions, 3) the customer tells you that they should be able to park at the parking garage you are assigned to even though the parking pass specifically states where to park at,  4) the customer tells you they do not want to go to the parking garage where the parking pass is only valid at, and 5) they will not pay for their parking?

What do you do? You reiterate policy, empathize with their frustration, reiterate policy again, and tell them they have two choices; pay for parking at your lot, or return to their designated lot.

Are you asking what to do if they refuse to take either of those options and are blocking the entrance for other (paying) customers? The answer in that case is to ask your supervisor how they'd like you to handle it. They may prefer you call them, security, or go straight to the cops.

If you're asking how to magically make a frustrated customer un-frustrated and compliant, I'm afraid there's no such solution. There will be people who are unhappy. Sometimes there will be nothing you can do to make them less unhappy, either because they're unhappy for an irrational reason, or because they may have a legitimate gripe for which there is no solution. Here's the good news: It is not your job to make everyone happy. It is your job to provide accurate information, to be courteous/give good customer service, and to take payment for cars in your lot.


Bexx27

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2013, 01:29:06 PM »


Call your manager or someone higher up who is paid to deal with stuff like this.  Politely let the customer know that you are taking steps to rectify the situation and that you are doing everything you can to see if there is anything you can do.  More often then not, if a customer see's you are trying to help them they will calm down and if they don't you have proof at least that you did everything you could to help them.

I'll give you an example...when I left my last job they mailed me my last paycheck and it got lost in the mail.  I called HR only to be told that I had to sign a few forms and that they would reissue me a check as soon as they received the signed paperwork (stating that the check had been lost or something like that).  I wasn't happy about this because it was a big inconvenience to me and I had bills due.

I expressed how frustrated I was by this process to the HR lady and all she kept saying was, "there's nothing further I can do."  It was incredibly frustrating to be summarily dismissed and to have no acknowledgement of the frustration this was causing and it made me angry to feel like someone wasn't doing everything they could to get my paycheck to me. 

Best piece of advise I got from a boss...put yourself in the customers shoes.  How would you like to be treated?

But...it was lost in the mail. It was out of their hands. There actually wasn't anything they could do. Putting myself in that HR person's shoes, I wouldn't want to be berated for something neither I nor my company had any control over.

At my job, we often send payments (money orders) through the mail. Sometimes they get lost in the mail. The only thing we can do is file an inquiry through the post office so that they will reimburse us if the money order hasn't been cashed, a process which takes 60 days. We can't simply send them another money order because there's a strong possibility they actually did receive the first one and either forgot or are scamming us (this happens all the time and the inquiry comes back with a copy of the cashed money order with their signature). All we can do is apologize for the inconvenience and tell them that unfortunately, there's nothing else we can do. It is no fun to be screamed and cursed at in that situation.
How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in life you will have been all of these. -George Washington Carver

dirtyweasel

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2013, 08:06:08 PM »


Call your manager or someone higher up who is paid to deal with stuff like this.  Politely let the customer know that you are taking steps to rectify the situation and that you are doing everything you can to see if there is anything you can do.  More often then not, if a customer see's you are trying to help them they will calm down and if they don't you have proof at least that you did everything you could to help them.

I'll give you an example...when I left my last job they mailed me my last paycheck and it got lost in the mail.  I called HR only to be told that I had to sign a few forms and that they would reissue me a check as soon as they received the signed paperwork (stating that the check had been lost or something like that).  I wasn't happy about this because it was a big inconvenience to me and I had bills due.

I expressed how frustrated I was by this process to the HR lady and all she kept saying was, "there's nothing further I can do."  It was incredibly frustrating to be summarily dismissed and to have no acknowledgement of the frustration this was causing and it made me angry to feel like someone wasn't doing everything they could to get my paycheck to me. 

Best piece of advise I got from a boss...put yourself in the customers shoes.  How would you like to be treated?

But...it was lost in the mail. It was out of their hands. There actually wasn't anything they could do. Putting myself in that HR person's shoes, I wouldn't want to be berated for something neither I nor my company had any control over.

At my job, we often send payments (money orders) through the mail. Sometimes they get lost in the mail. The only thing we can do is file an inquiry through the post office so that they will reimburse us if the money order hasn't been cashed, a process which takes 60 days. We can't simply send them another money order because there's a strong possibility they actually did receive the first one and either forgot or are scamming us (this happens all the time and the inquiry comes back with a copy of the cashed money order with their signature). All we can do is apologize for the inconvenience and tell them that unfortunately, there's nothing else we can do. It is no fun to be screamed and cursed at in that situation.

I never said that I screamed and cursed at the HR person for the inconvenience.  All I did was let her know that the process for getting a check reissued to me was a bit inconvenient to me because it would take an extra week and a half to get a new check when I had bills that had to be paid.  Not to get into legalities, but they were technically supposed to have issued me a check on my last day of work, but they couldn't since there was an issue with the people who issue the checks.  I was fine with this and told them to call me so that I could pick up the check, but without telling me they sent it by mail which then got lost. 

Not once did the HR person apologize for the inconvenience or even sympathize with my situation.  I realize that stuff gets lost in the mail, but regardless if the post office lost my check I am allowed to expect my paycheck in a timely manner.  As it was I received my last check THREE WEEKS after it was first issued.



YummyMummy66

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #19 on: October 12, 2013, 07:59:57 AM »
Sometimes, people need to complain to someone in person.  It really makes all the difference and they just need to let off a little steam.

What I would do is let them get their complaint in and then I would politely tell them, that while you were happy to listen to their complaint and let them get it off of their chest, there is really nothing that you can do or will come from them telling you.  Your suggestion is to write corporate and then have a little notice all ready for them with all of the correct information on it.
Address, person in care of, etc.

This will go much farther in pleasing the customer than you think.  (Well, most customers anyway).

YummyMummy66

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Re: Responding to complaints
« Reply #20 on: October 12, 2013, 08:03:30 AM »
Ok.  I just read your second post.

In your case, there is going to be no reasoning with this customer.  Bascially, she wants to park where she wants to park and get it for free no matter what.  She is one of those people who do not think they should have to follow the rules. 

I would have just said, I am sorry.  I am a volunteer.  These are the rules that we must follow.  If you want to park here, there is a fee.  If you would like to use your free pass, please exit and head over to that garage.  Rather, rinse, repeat.