Conflict can happen anywhere. Conflict is a part of everyday life. Best one can do is to minimize conflict and not let it affect you. Especially the time when businesses have conflicts with their clients. That is when you can lose all of your clients. One bad review by a client can ruin a business’s reputation, therefore it is advised to take care of that before it goes out of hand.
People trust businesses and brands that are loyal and honest to their clients, that give quality and give the word of their mouth. Conflicts usually expand over time, it can transfer from one client to dozens of clients and it can really ruin a business’s reputation, and eventually you can even go out of business as well.
So, whenever you are interacting with a client, you are taking a huge risk, you can either make it or break it. Here are a few things you need to do to handle conflict with your clients and come to a proper resolution.
- Let your clients talk.
Always let the clients express what they are feeling, let them vent, and really understand where they are coming from. Let them get their frustrations out in the open before they can calm down enough to talk to. Sometimes there are things happening within the client’s personal life that isn’t related to designing, but affect this in a negative light. The client doesn’t mean to do this but is just a natural thing that happens. Listening to your clients can go a long way in helping them overcome any issues they have!
- Show that you care about what the client is saying.
You should use sentences like “I understand” or “I know where you are coming from” To empathize with them. Once you do, it can calm them down before things go bad. Even chime in with your own story on how you can relate to the client! If you cant relate with the client, you can always explain how you can see how what they are experiencing can cause such discomfort and come to a solution together to overcome it.
- Use soft tone.
Using a soft tone can make your client feel like they do not have anything to get angry about. If one person is angry and another stays soft and quiet, eventually the fire runs out when there is no fuel. Talk to them in a soft tone, it will make them feel like they have nothing to be mad about. Talking to your client in a soft tone can also lighten the environment and tenseness of the conversation.
- Be normal, do not take sides.
It is up to your client to decide what they want in the end. Do not give them your opinion, unless they really ask you. Do not agree or disagree, you just have to listen to them, let them vent. Let them convey their ideas so that you can work on solving their issues properly. Being a mutual party can also help you be removed from the situation without the client even realizing it. Being able to use soft tone will also help you become more relaxed during the conversation and even help your client become relaxed.
- Do not give them any reaction.
If you react to their anger, you will only make them angrier. Be open-minded, be calm, and let them voice their concerns. When they do, then and only then you can come and direct the conversation to a place where their issue can be resolved.
- Talk to angry clients in private.
In case a client comes at you with his angry demeanor, take them to a secluded place where they won’t disturb existing clients or trades professionals.
- Give your client breaks.
If your client is too angry and can’t process their points, ask them to sit down, give them some tea or something to drink so they can calm down. Maybe even table the conversation for a later date to help them cool down for a few days!
This does not mean you agree with them entirely, you just have to agree with the issue they are having, you do not have to agree with the ultimatum they are spreading on to you, that is what you have to resolve to avoid any conflict with the client.
Follow these tips to resolve any conflict that may arise with the client to protect your business from negative reactions.