What to Say to the Customer Who Asks to Speak to a Supervisor

Women with headsets working at a call center

Thanks to the Internet and social media, customers are more savvy now than ever before.  Although this sounds like a good thing, the net result is an increase in stress for customer service professionals.

According to Newsweek magazine, the stress level of customer service representatives is comparable to that of air-traffic controllers and police officers.  To be clear, the role of customer service now ranks as one of the 10 most stressful jobs in the U.S.

One of the things I’m working on right now is how to find ways to relieve the stress contact center agents face on a daily basis. It’s hard to get verbally abused daily and to have to deal with nonstop phone calls and emails all day.

Dealing with the customer who demands to speak to your supervisor is stressful. The right approach to this customer will result in a less stressful situation for you.

What not to do when a customer asks to speak to a supervisor

1. When a customer asks to speak to a supervisor, don’t refuse. That’s what is known as “pushing.” If a customer is pushed, they will push back. Meaning they will be more difficult.

2. Don’t simply say, “Ok. Hold while I transfer you.” You don’t want to sound dismissive or flippant. Besides, you are a customer service professional. You are paid for your expertise, diplomacy and knowledge. You know, I know and your supervisor knows that you have all the skill you need to help any customer that shows up on your phone. So, make a good effort to try to help the customer.

 

What to Say to the Customer Who Asks to Speak to a Supervisor: The “U S A Method”

 

Try responding to the customer who demands to speak to your supervisor using the U S A method.

USA stands for …

  • Understanding Statement. Don’t say anything to the customer who asks for a supervisor without first demonstrating that you fully understand their frustration (or whatever it is they are feeling). It is very important that the customer feels you understand the inconvenience or problem they have experienced. If they don’t feel you understand what they are feeling, they may become more difficult and the call will most likely escalate.

  • Situation. Explain the situation. That is, explain that you can and would very much like to help the customer.

  • Action. Convey to the customer that if you aren’t able to help them, you will let them speak with a supervisor. That is the action you commit to take.

U S A in action…

So, right out of the gate your customer asks to speak with a supervisor. Here’s how you could respond using U S A:

 

Understanding Statement:

“I respect your request to speak with a supervisor.”

Situation:

“My supervisor is counting on me to do my job and resolve problems our customers encounter. Will you give me an opportunity to try to solve the problem before we go any further?”

Or

“Will you give me an opportunity to try and resolve this for you. That’s why I’m here.”

Action:

“If after speaking with me, you are still unhappy, I’ll immediately connect you with my supervisor. How does that sound?”

This is not a “magic wand” approach, but in many cases, when you demonstrate empathy with an understanding statement, explain the situation, and tell the customer what you can do, you will be doing your very best.

When you respond to the request for a supervisor with the USA method, you will find that fewer calls have to be escalated to your supervisors and that you are more confident in your response.

In this video I discuss how I got the USA method after working with a supervisor who never let calls get past her – even when callers demanded to speak to the president.

Now you can give your representatives even more great skills for delivering the best customer experience and for handling difficult customer situations. Sign up for my email list and learn specific tips, approaches and phrases to help your employees help your customers.

 

Here are 3 of the Customer Service YouTube Videos I Show in My Soft Skills Workshops

I’m really excited about delivering full day customer service workshop to a wonderful client in Montreal on Monday. I have been preparing for this event for months and I cannot wait to share my insights and enthusiasm with a wonderful group of new hires.

For the benefit of my audience and as a perk for you, I am sharing the videos I’ll be featuring in the customer service training. I use videos to both teach a specific message and to add extra engagement during the training.

During and after live customer service training workshops people always ask me for the links to my videos, so I’m being proactive and sharing them now.🙂

 

“Put Yourself In Their Shoes” video http://youtu.be/cDDWvj_q-o8

I use this video in my Empathy Module. It is a powerful video that truly gets participants to feel for another person. After this video, I divide participants into small groups and they debrief the video by discussing 4 questions that I hand out. Powerful, powerful video learning experience.

 

“Sympathy versus Empathy” video: http://youtu.be/3Azb1kubGEs

I use this short video to clarify the difference between sympathy and empathy and I emphasize that in customer service, we are focusing on empathy, not sympathy. This video always gets smiles and laughs, while quickly clarifying the difference between empathy and sympathy.

 

“United Broke My Guitar” video: http://youtu.be/5YGc4zOqozo

I open my Customer Recovery module with the famous United Broke My Guitar viral video. This video gets laughter and demonstrates the power of social media. I mostly show this video to get laughter and to engage participants after our lunch break.

I hope you enjoy these videos and that you might even find a way to use them in your own training. Now, time for me to do a complete run-through of this training so I can be great for my client in Montreal.🙂

Now you can give your representatives even more great skills for delivering the best customer experience and for handling difficult customer situations. Sign up for my email list and learn specific tips, approaches and phrases to help your employees help your customers.

 

Related posts:

Myra Golden’s Customer Service Training Courses

How I Build a Keynote Presentation

What a Myra Golden Training is Like

Ways I Engage My Audiences

Never Be Boring: 5 Ways to Never Be Boring as a Keynote Speaker

The Corporate Apology: How to Apologize In 5 Easy Steps

Proud Businesswomen

You probably remember the story about dozens of JetBlue Airlines’ passengers being stranded for more than 10 hours on the tarmac without taking off. That was February, 2007. Would you believe that JetBlue still managed to get the JD Power & Associates Award for #1 Customer Satisfaction for the airline industry for that year?

How did they do it? They apologized outright to customers after the traumatic event. And here’s how they did it:

 “We are sorry and embarrassed. But most of all, we are deeply sorry.”

A lot of companies are afraid to apologize because they think an apology assumes responsibility or that it may put the company at risk for liability. And I think this is a huge mistake.

The JetBlue example assumes total responsibility, holding nothing back. Look at how JetBlue goes on with their apology:

“Words cannot express how truly sorry we are for the anxiety, frustration and inconvenience that we caused. This is especially saddening because JetBlue was founded on the promise of bringing humanity back to air travel and making the experience of flying happier and easier for everyone who chooses to fly with us. We know we failed to deliver on this promise last week.”

JetBlue’s apology acknowledges their passengers’ “pain”, assumes accountability, conveys sincere concern, and the apology is direct. Most companies are too cautious to pull off an apology like this. Maybe the willingness to offer a sincere, bold apology after a service mishap is part of the reason JetBlue has topped the JD Power rankings for best in customer service for four consecutive years.

If your goal is to restore customer confidence and retain more customers, you need to apologize to customers in the wake of any problem, regardless of fault. When you do, you create emotional bonds with customers and build and strengthen customer loyalty.

Following are the 5 simple steps to apologizing to customers.

1. Outright apology

Start out with a clear and direct apology. “We are sorry and embarrassed. But most of all, we are deeply sorry.”

2. Explain what happened and why

A fundamental, but often overlooked element of customer recovery is to provide an explanation for how or why the problem happened. Taking the time to explain to a customer what might have caused the problem helps organizations re-establish trust. Here’s how Jet blue explained what happened in their apology letter:

  “The storm disrupted the movement of aircraft, and, more importantly, disrupted the movement of JetBlue’s pilot and inflight crewmembers who were depending on those planes to get them to the airports where they were scheduled to serve you. With the busy President’s Day weekend upon us, rebooking opportunities were scarce and hold times at 1-800-JETBLUE were unusually long or not even available, further hindering our recovery efforts.”

 

3. Acknowledge the customer’s “pain”

Make an empathetic statement that responds to the customer’s emotions. JetBlue did it this way:

“Words cannot express how truly sorry we are for the anxiety, frustration and inconvenience that you, your family, friends and colleagues experienced.”

 

4. Explain steps you’re taking to minimize problems going forward

In cases where the problem was clearly the fault of the company or one of your suppliers, you owe it to your customers to tell them what you plan to do to ensure they don’t end up in the same situation again. JetBlue’s explanation is textbook perfect:

 “We have begun putting a comprehensive plan in place to provide better and more timely information to you, more tools and resources for our crewmembers and improved procedures for handling operational difficulties. Most importantly, we have published the JetBlue Airways Customer Bill of Rights – our official commitment to you of how we will handle operational interruptions going forward – including details of compensation. We invite you to learn more at jetblue.com/promise.”

 

5. Ask for forgiveness

Make a request for your customer’s continued business. You might do it like this:

“You deserved better – a lot better – from us last week and we let you down. Nothing is more important than regaining your trust and all of us here hope you will give us the opportunity to once again welcome you onboard and provide you the positive JetBlue Experience you have come to expect from us.”

Apologize to customers using these 5 field-tested and proven steps and you’ll completely restore customer confidence in your company after even the worst has happened.

Now you can give your representatives even more great skills for delivering the best customer experience and for handling difficult customer situations. Sign up for my email list and learn specific tips, approaches and phrases to help your employees help your customers.


 

The Psychology of Customer Anger (Flashback Friday)

Flashback Friday! My kids used to post Throwback Thursday and Flashback Friday photos on Instagram. They don’t  do that anymore. In fact, they spend more time on Snapchat than on Instagram.

Well, I’m doing a Flashback post of my own – even if flashback posts are out of style.

I joined YouTube in 2007 and one of the first videos I published was “The Psychology of Customer Anger.”

That cheesy video has gotten over 60,000 views. I cringe when I look at the quality of the video and my style in front of the camera. My son laughed out loud when he came into my office last night and I had the video up.

I look so different from back then, nearly 10 years ago. I’ve lost weight, like 30 pounds. I wear my hair kinky curly. I like to think I’m more controlled and poised in front of the camera.

But my strategies haven’t changed. Not much anyway. I’m taking a risk and posting this Flashback Friday video because one, some or all of these tips just may help you get an angry customer to back down.

Try not to laugh too hard.

Now you can give your representatives even more great skills for delivering the best customer experience and for handling difficult customer situations. Sign up for my email list and learn specific tips, approaches and phrases to help your employees help your customers.

If you’d like to see more videos, most far more modern than this one, check out my library of short YouTube Customer Service Training videos.

The Best Advice I’ve Ever Heard For Getting Customer Service Reps to Convey Empathy

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Two years ago I was working with a company to help their customer service representatives convey empathy to customers. The intended outcome of the training was for employees to speak to customers with care, concern and compassion.

Achieving empathy in the customer experience is a bit like walking a tightrope. Too much empathy can result in longer talk times and inappropriate sharing between customer service representatives and customers. Not enough empathy and reps can sound cold and uncaring.

You have to find the right balance in empathy. Or else you fall off the rope and the customer experience is negatively impacted.

I asked my client how she saw appropriate empathy in her company. And here’s what she said.

It’s like when you go to a funeral you have 3 sets of people. In the front row you have immediate family. They are grieving and trying to console one another. There are tears, tissues, hugs; tremendous pain.

In the back pews of the church you have co-workers, neighbors and friends. These people are not as close to the deceased and their grief and emotion is different. They are not as connected.

And in the middle of the church you have Aunt Sally. Aunt Sally is a member of the family, yet her grief is different. She’s not inconsolable. Rather, she’s the one handing the immediate family members a Kleenex or the one who will give a hug. She’s not distant and unconnected, like those on the back pews, yet she’s not up close and personal with her emotion like immediate family members.

I want our people to be Aunt Sally. Right there in the middle.

My client is brilliant. Yes, that is exactly the goal of empathy in the customer experience. This is the best advice I have ever heard for getting customer service representatives to convey empathy – appropriate empathy.

Customer Service Representatives must not be too up-close and personal with customers, yet being distant and aloof results in a poor customer experience. They must be like Aunt Sally: connected, warm, approachable, personable and friendly.

Now you can give your employees the soft skills training they need so they can instinctively put themselves in your customer’s shoes and respond with more empathy, concern and friendliness. 

 

I discuss my client’s Aunt Sally approach in this short YouTube video

What Customer Service Representatives Can Learn From Doctors About Delivering Bad News

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Two years ago my dad needed a quadruple bypass and to have 3 heart valves replaced. The surgery came with risks. There was a 10 – 15% risk of death during or shortly after surgery. My family arranged a meeting with my dad’s surgeon where the entire family could ask questions about the surgery.

The surgeon walked into the simple exam room to meet with us. He greeted us, shook our hands and took a seat across from my dad. I was the first to ask a question. “If my dad doesn’t have this surgery, what are we looking at doctor?”

The surgeon expertly handled my question, all of our questions. I noticed how calm we were as we took in the bad news the doctor was delivering. There’s a lot customer service professionals can learn from doctors when it comes to delivering bad news.

Doctors, surgeons and trauma teams are strategically trained and highly skilled in delivering bad news. In fact, doctors who deliver bad news best have mastered 3 things: Attitude, Clarity and Openness to Questions.


Watch this short YouTube video where I explain The 3 Keys Doctors Use to Deliver Bad News


Attitude of the News-Giver

My dad’s surgeon was fully present with us. He spoke warmly with appropriate empathy. Not too much empathy, just enough and he was direct. He faced me squarely and responded.

“If your dad does not have this surgery, he’s looking at one of 3 outcomes. He will be dead in less than two years. Or, he will be confined to a wheelchair because his body will be so frail and weak. Another possible outcome is he will be bedridden.”

While the news is certainly not what any of us wanted to hear, I noticed how well we took in the news. My dad and mom had, of course, heard the news before. But this was my first time hearing the news from the surgeon.

The surgeon’s attitude, an attitude of full presence, confidence, directness and empathy, helped prepare us to receive the news.

Clarity of the Message

I followed up my first question with, “What are the risks of this surgery?” The surgeon explained that there was, in fact, a risk of death during or after surgery, a 10-15% risk of death. “But if my dad should suffer a stroke or heart attack in surgery, he’s in the best place for this to happen, right? He’s with a team of doctors and surgeons.”

This is where the clarity really came in. The surgeon said, “I’m telling you that the risks are there. If your dad were to experience a stroke, heart attack or other complication while in surgery, we’ll do all we can. I cannot guarantee your father will make it through this surgery.”

The surgeon was clear. He didn’t waste words and he didn’t sugarcoat the news. He gave it to us straight, which is what we needed.

Openness to Questions

I had more questions, lots, and so did my family. The surgeon confidently responded to each of our questions and encouraged us to ask all that we needed. He was patient and knowledgeable, backing up everything he stated with facts. We felt comfortable asking questions and none of us felt that our questions were too much or dumb.

Arm your employees with doctor’s skills for delivering bad news. Help them cultivate an attitude of empathy, walk them through how to be clear, direct and concise and make sure they make customers feel completely comfortable asking questions. When you do these things, your employees will deliver bad news with ease and without backlash.

Now you can give your representatives even more great skills for delivering the best customer experience and for handling difficult customer situations. Sign up for my email list and learn specific tips, approaches and phrases to help your employees help your customers.

 

 

New Training Teaches Conversational Aikido to Help Those Handling Difficult Customers

Creating calm with difficult customers is not a matter of using aggressive tactics. It’s also not about letting the customer vent until they cool off or you being a doormat. There are definite tactics, deployed strategically, that will position any customer service professional to create calm, defuse anger and assertively control conversations.

Aikido

 

Introducing…

How to Handle Difficult Customers Using Verbal Aikido

5 Aikido Principles for Creating Calm, Defusing Anger and Moving to Closure with Difficult Customers

In this special online workshop Myra reveals the 5 Conversational Aikido principles she has adapted from her 15-year study of the martial art Aikido. Employees will walk away from this workshop with specific Aikido techniques and tactics to create calm, take control of the call, defuse anger and move the call to closure. Myra’s Aikido principles have earned rave reviews from such clients as Johnson & Johnson, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Ally Financial, Nationwide, the Insurance Consumer Affairs Exchange and more.

 

On Demand Video Training. Get this video training now and help your team handle difficult customers like an Aikido Master


The outcome of this web training event is customer service professionals who walk away understanding exactly how to create calm; how to find resolutions that balance the interests of the customer and the company; how to reduce escalations; and how to create a positive conversation.


Key Take-Aways:

  • Discover 5 Aikido practices that I promise will make you more effective in handling difficult customers.
  • Explore the psychology of customer anger so that you understand what is going on in the mind of your upset customer.
  • Understand why ignoring the customer’s expression of anger is the WRONG thing to do– find out why you MUST assertively acknowledge your customer’s anger.
  • Find out how to strategically create calm with aggressive customers.
  • Examine the communication chain and learn how it gives you the edge in communicating in conflict situations.
  • Learn why you should see your difficult customer as a “partner” and not an opponent. Aikido masters always consider their opponent a partner and you’ll learn why.
  • Find out why the issue isn’t the “real” issue with dealing with angry or agitated customers.
  • See why listening with the intent to understand the customer is a powerful tool for creat- ing calm and getting the customer to stop talking and listen to you.

     

    “Myra’s positive attitude really makes me feel that one person can completely change another’s state of being.”

    – Pablo Martinez, Consumer Affairs Specialist, Kellogg’s

     

A strategy discussed in this training is “Acknowledging customer Anger” See Myra discuss this tip below.

This training is perfect for:
  • Customer service professionals who deal with difficult customers on a daily basis
  • New hires who are inexperienced in handling aggressive and difficult customers
  • Employees who come across as aggressive or blunt with difficult customers
  • Contact centers experiencing a high rate of call escalations due to employees’ inability to handle difficult customers

 

How to Handle Difficult Customers Using Verbal Aikido

5 Aikido Principles for Creating Calm, Defusing Anger and Moving to Closure with Difficult Customers

 

On-demand replay of webinar

$299 per organization. Registration is FREE to Members. Registration includes

  • Unlimited logins from your organization
  • Comprehensive Handouts
  • Digital copy of the webinar – you can download it, save and have it forever!

Get this video training now and help your team handle difficult customers like an Aikido Master

How to De-escalate Angry or Agitated Customers

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Creating calm with difficult customers is not a matter of using aggressive tactics. It’s also not about employees being a doormat, giving in to customer demands or escalating to a supervisor. This video, an excerpt from my customer service eLearning suite, is about how to take assertive control, create calm and pre-empt escalations.

Watch this 7-minute video here.

 


Myra Golden’s Full Access

 

Unlimited access to Myra’s live webinar series, library of on-demand training courses, customer service eLearning suite and training kits – for a flat affordable rate.

Member Benefits:

  • Unlimited attendance to Myra’s live web seminar series for one year

  • One full year of unlimited access to Myra’s 10-course customer service eLearning suite (Training courses for frontline customer service professionals)

  • Instant on-demand access to our library of archived webinars

  • Immediate download of any of Myra’s Training Kits – (Pre-written training scripts, PowerPoint slides, workbooks, handouts and exercises)

 

Learn more about Full Access here.

Affordable Customer Service E-Learning

 

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We created our customer experience eLearning portal to fully prepare frontline employees to deliver friendly, empathic and personable interactions over the phone, email and chat. Delivered in short engaging modules that you pick and choose from, this is a great professional development platform to set new hires up for success and it’s a great skill primer for employees needing a warmer and friendlier touch in interactions.

Myra Golden, a customer experience keynote speaker, trainer and author, who has worked with such brands as Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Vera Bradley, Lincoln Financial, Bumble Bee Foods and Frito-Lay, helps your people with such relevant customer service training topics as:

Customer Experience Over the Telephone: From beginning to end these are the soft skills you need for the best telephone customer experience

How to Talk to Customers: Human relations skills to help your employees deliver a delightful customer experience

Empathy: A short experiential course designed to inspire a true culture of empathy

How to Handle Difficult Customers: 5 Conversational Aikido principles to put customer service professionals in control when dealing with challenging customers

Call Control: How to politely control calls using conversational Aikido

Email Writing: 3 elements of a great email customer experience

How to De-escalate: An assertive approach to pre-empting an escalation in aggression 

How to Deliver a Wow Customer Experience: 20 Ideas to Help You WOW customers

Complaint Handling: Learn to handle problems in such a way that you completely restore customer confidence after a service mishap

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions

 

This customer service training is perfect for:

  • Contact Center Professionals who speak with customers over the phone, via email and chat
  • Front-desk employees in medical practices
  • Customer-facing employees in any industry
  • Training Departments that have gaps in soft skill to fill
  • Small companies that want to instantly improve the customer experience
  • Call centers

The first thing that struck me about Myra Golden’s eLearning module was how engaging they were.  You are asked to actively participate in each module and there are action items you take away.  The participant gets to see Myra and her captivating personality throughout the module.  These two features set Myra’s modules apart from other customer service modules, and our participants comment about how the time flies when they are taking them – another indication of their engagement! 

The second thing is that Myra and her staff live their lessons.  They are supportive and go above and beyond to make sure that we have all we need on the administration end of things and alert us if there are new or updated modules. 

This one-two punch knocks her competition out of the water! 

Kristin Augusta, Sr. Operations Manager, John Hancock


Training Features

  • Ten (10) online video courses for employees to follow on their own
  • 12-month access to training
  • Unlimited access within purchasing organization (An unlimited number of users can access the training with a single login that we supply.)
  • Flexible course selection (Your employees don’t necessarily have to participate in all courses – You’ll choose the topics your employees need and they will only be presented with the courses relevant to your company)
  • Training led by customer service expert, Myra Golden
  • Interactive exercises and thought-provoking questions to ensure the learning is adopted and applied
  • Quizzes at the end of each module to test learning. (Your employees must score at least 80% in each module in order to “pass”)
  • YouTube video skits with exercises to keep your people engaged, get them laughing and help make the learning “stick”
  • Printable key points
  • Certificate of completion
  • Immediate password access on our website
  • Ready for uploading to your SCORM/AICC compliant LMS or your intranet website

Course Descriptions

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions

Customer Experience Over the Telephone

Training length: 21 minutes with a quiz

This training is about how to consistently deliver friendly and personable interactions over the telephone. Myra introduces 4 elements of the perfect call opening, walks your people through the best way to place customers on hold and she demonstrates how to end calls on a positive note.

The outcome of this module is customer service professionals who are prepared to establish rapport with callers within the first few seconds of the call, handle the body of the phone call with poise and end calls on a friendly note.

Key Take-aways:

  • 4 key elements of the perfect call opening – an opening that sets the tone for a friendly interaction
  • How to welcome a caller to the phone interaction in a manner similar to welcoming a guest into your home
  • Why you shouldn’t ask probing questions prior to using a “lead-in”
  • How to place callers on hold in the friendliest way possible
  • A 3-step way to give your customers a fond farewell so that you end the call on positive note

 

“I have attended many customer service trainings and I have worked in customer relations for many years. Today I learned more in a few hours than I ever could have imagined! And the way Myra presented the information was wonderful.” Caitlin Singer, Team Lead, Aveda Corporation


How to Talk to Customers

Human Relations Skills to Help You Deliver a Delightful Customer Experience

Training length: 21 minutes with a quiz

How to Talk to Customers protects your employees from coming across as rote, cold or uncaring. This training gives your employees the human relations skills they need to deliver a warm, friendly, conversational customer experience.

This training is perfect for:

  • Employees who have a tendency to interrupt or over talk customers
  • Organizations concerned that employees sound rote or robotic
  • Companies wanting to deliver a warmer, friendlier, more natural customer experience

The outcome of this training experience is frontline employees who are prepared to deliver a warm, conversational, friendly experience through positive language that sets the tone, yielding to callers, speaking in complete sentences and pacing customers.

Key Take-aways:

  • The friendly way to exchange pleasantries with a customer without losing control of the conversation
  • Unlike a text message, it is not professional to speak in fragments or one word sentences (i.e. “Name?,” “Zip code?”) – Myra explains why speaking in complete sentences instantly makes you sound friendlier
  • Why you need to bridge into questioning with customers
  • How to make your customers feel smart and good – even when they ask questions you might think are “dumb”
  • How to make sure your language does not provoke customers
  • Why you should never tell a customer they are wrong – even when they are wrong
  • The reason you must yield to callers so that you never over talk or interrupt
  • Learn why terms of endearment, like “hun,” “sweetie” are perfect in the right settings, but they are not appropriate when speaking with customers

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions

“I was very pleased with Myra’s presentation, but even more so, I was left with a sense of new energy and desire to put her recommendations to use. I can’t wait for Monday.” Tim O’Laughlin, The Coca-Cola Company


Empathy

A short experiential course designed to inspire empathy

Training length: 16 minutes

Myra Golden’s Empathy workshop is a short highly engaging professional development experience designed to inspire your people to truly feel empathy for their customers. Through videos and stories designed to evoke authentic emotion and thought provoking debriefing with Myra, your people will be inspired and motivated to convey empathy to your customers. This course does not include a quiz, as the module is all about what your employees feel during the experience.

The outcome of this module is customer service professionals who are inspired to communicate with patience, care, concern and compassion.

Key Take-aways:

  • What empathy is and how it differs from sympathy.
  • Empathy is important, yet we don’t want to get too personal or involved with customers. Myra walks you through how to have appropriate empathy with customers.
  • A profound real-life empathy lesson from employees of the renowned Cleveland Clinic.
  • Myra challenges your people to truly put themselves in their customer’s shoes.

“Not only was Myra focused and articulate in her presentation, but the personalized approach she takes to such difficult topics as anger as it relates to customer service will make me a more insightful Rep.” Michelle Paglione, Estee Lauder Companies


How to Handle Difficult Customers

Conversational Aikido: 5 Aikido principles to put customer service professionals in control when dealing with challenging customers

Training Length: 41 minutes, includes quiz

Thanks to the Internet and social media, customers are more savvy now than ever before.  Although this sounds like a good thing, the net result is an increase in stress for frontline customer service professionals. According to Newsweek magazine, the stress level of consumer services professionals is comparable to that of air-traffic controllers and police officers. In short, the role of customer service now ranks as one of the 10 most stressful jobs in the U.S.

In this training Myra Golden reveals that extremely difficult customers are determined to force corporations—via the customer service professional—to give in to the consumer demands—reasonable or not.  This means the customer service professional must develop a response plan.

Myra, a former global head of customer care, teaches leaders how to achieve harmony with dissatisfied and difficult customers through the use of conversational aikido.

The outcome of this training is participants who are prepared to create calm, find resolutions that balance the interests of the customer and the company, how to reduce escalations, and how to create a positive conversation challenging customers.

Key Take-aways:

  • Get 5 powerful keys from the martial art Aikido to position you to communicate assertively, create calm and take control with difficult customers.
  • Learn why the issue isn’t the issue. The way the issue is handled becomes the real issue.
  • Understand the importance of acknowledging a customer’s anger as a tool to de-escalate.
  • How listening with the intent to understand the customer is a powerful tool for creating calm and getting the customer to stop talking and listen to you.

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions

“Myra’s positive attitude really makes me feel that one person can completely change another’s state of being.”  —Pablo Martinez, Consumer Affairs Specialist Kellogg’s


Call Control

Using conversational Aikido to politely and effectively control calls

Training Length: 34 minutes, includes quiz

Studies show the average business call lasts 2 minutes longer than it needs to. Customer service employees struggle with call control for a variety of reasons, including they don’t want to be rude to the customer, they aren’t sure how to move to closure or because the customer is rambling or angry.

Using the principles of harmony, assertiveness and leading from the martial art Aikido, Myra walks your employees through the steps to politely and confidently control conversations.

The outcome of this training is employees who possess the soft skills to make customers feels heard and understood, politely lead conversations and assertively bring calls to closure.

Key Take-aways:

  • An introduction to the communication chain and why you must never leave the chain unlinked – because that makes customers talk more.
  • How acknowledging customer concern makes customers feel heard and understood – feelings that tend to remove the need for customers to ramble on.
  • Perfect statements to help employees gain control with aggressive customers.
  • How to use the “topic grab” approach to politely get a long-winded or storyteller to get to the point.
  • How asking 3-closed ended questions back-to-back instantly puts you in control of ANY conversation.
  • 4 ways to politely bring the call to closure after you have met all of the customer’s needs.

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions


How to De-escalate

An assertive approach to pre-empting an escalation in aggression 

Creating calm with difficult customers is not a matter of using aggressive tactics. It’s also not about employees being a doormat, giving in to customer demands or escalating to a supervisor. This training is about how to take assertive control, create calm and pre-empt escalations.

Key Take-aways:

  • The 3-step process politicians, police chiefs and CEOs use to de-escalate a crisis situation and how you can use these same steps to de-escalate conversations with difficult customers.
  • Exactly what to say to the customer who demands to speak to a supervisor. This method is polite and effective.
  • You cannot ignore a customer’s expression of anger – find out why.
  • The psychology of anger – Understand what is going on in the mind of your angry customer.
  • Three things angry people want – knowing these things is the most powerful way to preempt an escalation.

The outcome of this training is employees walk away with specific techniques to create calm, take control of the call, defuse anger and move the call to closure.

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Email Writing

3 Elements of a Great Email Customer Experience

Training length: 36 minutes, includes quiz

The outcome of this email writing training is employees who know exactly how to make emotional connections with customers through the use of tailoring, conveying empathy when appropriate and by strategically using personal pronouns.

Key Take-aways:

  • The 3 things you have to get right in order to have the best email customer experience
  • How to strategically use personal pronouns to instantly make your emails friendlier and more personable
  • Review actual email examples of near-perfect emails from great companies
  • A comprehensive take-away grammar guide to help your people avoid embarrassing grammar gaffes
  • 4 ways to connect with customers over email
  • Why you should aim for short sentences in emails to customers
  • How to avoid the top 3 grammar mistakes that rob your company of credibility

Download PDF of Full Course Descriptions


 

Sample our Customer Service eLearning Module

How to Talk to Customers

Human Relations Skills to Help You Deliver a Warm and Delightful Customer Experience 

Sample How to Talk to Customers

 

Telephone Skills Training

Module 1: How to Open Calls on a Positive Note

Sample Telephone Skills

 

Before You Hit Send!

Essential Email Writing Skills

Sample Before You Hit Send

Pricing

Myra Golden’s Customer Service eLearning courses are licensed on an annual basis (12 months) at $599 per organization. Licensure includes:

  • Access to our full library of eLearning customer service courses for 12 months
  • Optional zip output of eLearning courses in SCORM/AICC for your corporate LMS
  • Up to 10 unique logins. Please keep in mind that an unlimited number of people can access the course with a single login. Additional logins can be purchased in blocks of 25. Please call our office for details.

 

Purchase a 12-month subscription to Myra Golden’s Customer Service e-Learning Portal for $599.

 

“Myra’s program was excellent! One of the best training sessions we have attended -well presented. The session was very beneficial to our everyday job!” -Shirley Perry, Michelin North America