Customer Service: How Not to Hate Your Customers
This one day Customer Service Training Course is for anyone who has contact with customers, whether face to face, over the phone and even ‘electronically’.
It is designed to help you manage your own feelings and behaviour while looking after your customers.
It's will build your confidence and enable you to create positive customer experiences, manage customer expectations, handle difficult customers and make the most of every customer contact.
The course will give you the skills to develop customer loyalty and it will teach you how to take care of yourself and feel confident in any customer situation.
- Defining Good Customer Service
- Finding the "Human Moment"
- Gaining Confidence in your Customer Service Role
- Delivering a Positive Customer Experience
- Practising Advanced Listening and Responding Skills
- Building Customer Loyalty
- Developing Personal Customer Relationships
- Dealing with Difficult, Rude or Indifferent Customers
- Using Empathy to Manage Complaints
- Making the Customer’s Point of View Work for you
- Caring for Yourself as well as your Customers
What are Delegates Say:
“This has to be the best customer services training I have ever attended. The course was made fun and I felt comfortable enough to participate and enjoyed it. I thought it would have been boring, but the scenarios and role play implemented the learning process.”
Customer Service Course Programme
We tailor all our courses to reflect the needs of the delegates on the day. The course content may include many of the exercises listed below, and any additional material that the trainers feel is relevant.
To begin the day delegates will be asked what they specifically would like from this Customer Service programme. We let people know that the workshop will be adapted throughout the day to meet their specific needs.
What is Customer Service really like?
Here we will look specifically at some of the problems front line customer service staff encounter. What kind of difficult and tricky customers they have to deal with, what the pitfalls are and where they get wrong-footed.
Defining Really Good Customer Service
First, we need to define what Good Customer Service is: How do you feel when it's good? How do you feel when it's bad?
Here we look at what gets each individual’s ‘goat’. In other words, what behaviours, demands, communications by customers are most upsetting, frustrating and hardest to deal with?
What Would You Like to Say?
When frustrations are triggered lots of thoughts fly through people’s minds and most of the time they never get said. This is an opportunity for delegates to vent those frustrations in a safe and supportive atmosphere.
SCARF Model of Social Interaction
We look at David Rock’s model of how people behave when they feel threatened or are facing loss which can really come to the fore in customer service situations.
By raising awareness of these hard-wired reactions and behaviour delegates can practise how to look after their customers.
Listening and Responding with Empathy
This training exercise allows the other person to be heard and get their point of view across while allowing delegates to set clear boundaries and deliver a difficult or uncomfortable message.
It also demonstrates how powerful body language is, even on the phone.
Emotion vs. Objectivity: "So What You're Saying Is..."
A pairs training exercise that allows people calm down an over-emotional customer without getting drawn in.
We will create a typical customer conflict scenario that ends up heated, with each person trying to convince the other that his or her point of view is the right one.
We then replay it with one person taking on the skill of being an 'objective observer' who is able to reflect back to the customer what they think is going on.
Typical Scenarios: Forum Theatre
We look at some typical scenarios that we have seen many times on our courses as well as any ‘live’ scenarios delegates may want to look at.
The trainers play out the scenes and use Forum Theatre to get everyone involved in identifying options, replaying the scenarios based on delegates’ suggestions.
Using these suggestions, we will introduce a variety of short exercises that everyone can practise.
They might include: establishing empathy, seeing things from ‘their’ point of view, gaining customer confidence, delivering difficult messages.
Moments of Truth
This section is based on Jan Carlzoni’s technique of identifying ‘Moments of Truth’.
He said that every organisation has moments in their interaction with customers that can make or break the customer experience.
By identifying what happens in their organisations' delegates can look at what safeguards they could put in place right away.
Customer Service Cycle
The Customer Service Cycle is a very simple way of looking at the whole customer interaction:
Get Agreement for the Next Step
Delegates can either use this or come up with one that would suit them and their situation and practise making the cycle work.
What’s the Payoff?
Small group discussion of what it feels like to ‘delight’ a customer and how that impacts on their day, their role, etc.
Here we will introduce some of the phrases we have collected over the years that help defuse tricky situations.
We will also ask delegates if they have any favourite phrases that they know work.
At the end of the training programme, we will collate these in a booklet and distribute them to everyone.
Head and Heart
Delegates look at the difference between solving someone’s problem or difficulty from their head or their heart. Or a combination of both. Understanding the difference will help give delegates options as to what impact they want to have.
How Do I Let Go?
Having had one difficult customer service encounter, it can be really hard to let go of all the feelings, frustrations and residue of that, before you are able to face the next difficult or tricky customer service situation with a clean slate as it were. We know that it's very easy to metaphorically 'kick the cat'.
Feelings: we have a brief 'in your head' exercise that demonstrates how powerful feelings can be, even when they aren't verbally expressed.
We also look at how our feelings influence our assumptions, where we make things up and then act as though what we made up is true.
Here is an opportunity for the whole group to brainstorm about different techniques and tools they know work to deal with their own angry, upset or frustrated feelings.
How Do I Want to Be/Personal Rules/Commitments
First working individually and then in small groups delegates will identify what will work for them personally, what they could replace that doesn’t work for them and any rules they could follow that would help them ‘hate their customers less’.
They will discuss their commitments to doing things differently in the weeks ahead.
Customer Service Course Summary and Personal Take Out
To round of the day each person will create a Customer Service Plan of Action looking at:
What they are taking away from the Customer Service Course, what specifically they know they will use and where they will practise.
They also have access to a course web page containing
- Handouts used during the course
- New supportive material
- Impact Factory PDF documents
- Recommended reading
- Links to our favourite videos
- Photos of the day
to help further their progress.
Customer Service: How Not to Hate Your Customers
Book this course
Freephone: 0808 1234 909
The Customer Service - Impact Factory team:
- Bill SheehanAt Impact Factory Bill specializes in Presentations Skills, Personal Impact, Assertiveness and Customer Service and he’s brilliant at Forum Theatre
- Caitlin ShannonCaitlin has insight, natural warmth and bags of energy to engage with delegates and bring the work to life
- Dom KracmarDom is a firm believer in the Impact Factory ethos of giving people space and time to explore and discover things for themselves.
- Kate ArneilKate is involved with Performance Management, Conflict Management, Presentation and Communication Skills Training.
- Sarah DawrantSarah has warmth, humour, a quick mind and unlimited passion to help people develop by stretching their comfort zones.
- Tom BodellTom's expertise is in Presentation Skills, Communication Skills and Storytelling. He also has a fondness for Time Management.
Attend this Customer Service Course risk-free
We are so confident in our trainers and the quality of our Customer Service Course that we guarantee it will make an impact.
If you attend this training and believe you have not benefited, let us know and we can arrange a refund or a free placement on a more suitable course.#
Training Course Accreditation
To ensure that the courses you attend are of the highest quality, offering the best professional tuition possible,
all our Open Courses are evaluated and accredited.
This accredited course is suitable for corporate and public sector Continuing Professional Development Plans and Portfolios.