Proven Call Center Best Practices: 5 Things a Rep Should Never Say to Their Customers

The one thing that has more impact on the success of your business than the products you provide is your company’s customer service.

Consumers not only expect quality goods, but they expect a high level of professionalism, expertise, and courtesy. One unsatisfied customer can turn away many prospective customers, but a happy customer can be your most effective advertiser. In an age where people can reach thousands — maybe millions — of people within a few seconds, word-of-mouth is more important than ever!

It’s likely that you won’t know which of your customers are social media influencers until their impact on your business — be it good or bad — is already felt. But, while absolute perfection may be unattainable, there are certain gaffs that your company just cannot afford. Continue reading to see five things a customer should never hear from anyone at your company.

“You’re wrong”

One of the most popular phrases in the business canon is “the customer is always right” — you’ve definitely heard that one before, right? Common sense tells you that this is not so, but regardless, you never want to tell the customer that they’re wrong. That is the worst way to keep a customer’s loyalty or convert a first-time customer into a repeat one.

When customers call your establishment for support, then they are seeking a solution to a problem and something has already gone wrong. They’re frustrated by whatever the malfunction is, so you don’t want to compound the situation by telling them that they’re wrong. There are more effective ways to inform the customer of what is right than condescending to them.

Just remember, “you’re wrong” is an accusatory phrase. You don’t ever want to accuse or argue with your patrons.

“I don’t know”

When a customer asks you a question about a product or service, they’re seeking insights which they expect your company to have. In reality, everyone will have moments when they are not as informed about a topic as maybe they should be.

However, “I don’t know” is never the right answer, no matter how true it is. If you were to call a healthcare call center seeking answers about a change in your healthcare plan, and the rep told you they didn’t know how to help, would you still feel comfortable entrusting that company to cover your health insurance?

“That’s not my problem”

Sometimes customers make mistakes, too. If they make a mistake while using a product or service of yours, then you can expect them to call you to bail them out. No matter how much of a mess they may have gotten themselves into, their problem is your problem!

With that being said, telling a customer that their problem is not yours will only push them into the open arms of a competitor who’s willing to take on this “problem customer.”

“It’s not my fault”

No one likes to be blamed for an issue that they did not cause, but if you find yourself falsely accused by a customer, there’s a right way to handle it. And saying “It’s not my fault” is not that way. It’s condescending and will make the customer think that you’re placing the blame on them.

The best way to handle this situation is to swallow your pride and say “I’m sorry for the inconvenience,” and proceed to do everything in your power to rectify the mistake.

“Um… I think… maybe”

When a customer comes to you for support or answers, they’re doing so because they need your expertise. While this is akin to saying “I don’t know”, it’s not quite the same. This response is more seen when a rep suspects they might be right, but are unsure.

If you aren’t sure about a customer’s inquiry, while you shouldn’t say “I don’t know”, you shouldn’t just guess either. The best thing that you can do is lead them to someone in your company who can provide the help they’re seeking.

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