We Are Sunshine

Dealing with Pushy Customers

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

Ever feel like some of your customers are as difficult to deal with as toddlers? contributor Tom Searcy compares dealing with pushy customers to dealing with children in his article “Customer Service: How to Handle Pushy Customers.”  The wrong way: Cajole, try to delay or deflect, threaten, then concede. The right way: Set clear boundaries, be consistent, mean what you say and have direct and logical consequences.

  1. Set expectations. Make expectations clear up front. Pushy customers often keep pushing because the lines are not clear enough
  2. Reset expectations at each interaction. “If you give someone an inch, they’ll take a mile.” It’s your responsibility to re-assert original expectations when a pushy customer makes an unreasonable request.
  3. Aim for parity when going outside of the original understanding. At times, it will be necessary to make concessions to appease a pushy customer. But if you agree to all demands, they will likely push harder the next time. Instead, make sure that the customer makes a concession as well. This will teach them that bullying does not change the rules or agreement.
  4. Don’t threaten. Threatening a client can cause long-term damage to the relationship. Instead, offer trade-offs and options.
  5. Keep records. “This is about clarity and accuracy, as well as protecting yourself,” Searcy says. Keep clear records of all agreements, expectations and tradeoffs to come back to in the case of a disagreement.

To read the entire article, please click here.