Dealing with difficult clients! You see them all the time. They follow your detailer’s every move, harp about the slightest mistake and even threaten to bring the matter to any higher-ups that they know of. They refuse to budge and talk ever so loudly for all customers to hear. They question your methods, compare you with other car washes or keep on ranting until the service is finished. Yes, these are the people who can turn your gay day into gray. But why should you allow them to make your life miserable when you can do something about it?
Dealing with Difficult Clients: 5 Tips
Nobody wants to lose any clients, even the difficult ones. After all, they are the lifeblood of any business. This is why wise entrepreneurs hire experts to create strategies that will help them retain their car wash customers and consequently, build customer loyalty. But what should a car wash owner like you do when faced with a customer who is far from angelic? Below are five tips to help you out.
1. Acknowledge and Redirect
Dealing with difficult clients can sometimes be easier if you acknowledge their complaint. Some clients only become difficult because they want you to listen to them. Give them that benefit by recognizing that an issue exists and direct the conversation to a doable solution. For example, if Mr. Brown has been complaining for the nth time that your car wash employee just cannot give his headlights a decent shine, you can say, “I understand your situation. We all want our headlights to shine like new, don’t we?” Then explain why no amount of soap and water can restore his headlights to a like-new appearance and that the only solution is, of course, to have them detailed. In so doing, you have not only made him feel important, but also established yourself as a knowledgeable car wash owner worthy of his trust and loyalty.
2. Empower Your Staff
Clients are turned off easily when they do not have anyone to address their complaints on. Sure, you can handle customer complaints through a complaints desk or a comment box, but you will need much more than those when you are dealing with difficult clients. These people want to air out their grievances on the spot and expect results as soon as possible. You can make this happen by allowing your employees to decide on matters that do not require your immediate attention. Train them how to handle customer complaints with the help of the three P’s – patience, politeness, and professionalism when faced with your less than ideal clients. For instance, instead of frowning or disagreeing with a client, an employee should listen patiently until the customer has finished his complaint, explain his side politely and be as professional as possible in addressing the whole situation.
3. Keep Your Cool
Just like you, your clients may have issues at home or at work which can make them irritable at the slightest provocation. Do not take his words at face value even when he’s becoming abusive. He might just be venting out his frustration on you. Just calm down and speak in a low voice. Remember that you will not accomplish anything by reacting angrily. And beware with what you say when dealing with difficult clients – the slightest, thoughtless utterance can refuel a wildfire of sorts. Show respect, professionalism, and understanding. He will come into his senses once he recognizes that no hurtful words can sway you.
4. Accept the Inevitable
There are times when it is better to walk away than keep on arguing with a client who has made it clear that he has no intentions of budging or agreeing with you – ever. Go ahead and let go – you have no use for somebody who, instead of contributing to your growth, will only hamper it. Focus your attention to customers who appreciate your work.
5. Deliver Quality Service
As experts say, the best car wash customer service is by providing prompt, reliable and efficient services all the time. No amount of sales talk or rapport can ever make up for a lousy auto wash or a poorly detailed interior. Train your staff on the best ways to detail vehicles and you will win repeat customers who might even turn into loyal customers and promote your business as well.
Dealing with difficult clients does not have to be a problem. Just acknowledge and redirect their issues, empower your staff, keep your cool, accept the inevitable, and, above all, deliver quality service.
And for a more stress-free car wash management, why don’t you become one of our franchisees? You can benefit from our business knowledge and practices, including customer service and handling difficult clients.
Enjoyed this post? Sign up for our newsletter to receive more valuable business and franchise info, ideas, and extras!