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Handling Irate Customers a Delicate Matter

Dealing with irate customers is among the most pressure packed experiences any employee will ever encounter.  Facing off with a screaming, unreasonable, irrational customer represents the ultimate test of any employee’s service skills.


For even the most seasoned employees, handling irate customers can be difficult.  The essential characteristics, or four C’s will help employees to better dissect a situation, effectively react to stress and work toward constructive and mutually beneficial resolutions.


  • Compassion – Put yourself in the shoes of your irate customer and think about what they are going through.
  • Calm – Stay calm and collected and allow yourself to focus on the moment.  If you lose your cool you lose.
  • Confidence –You know what to do.  Confidence in yourself and your abilities will allow you to counter emotion from an irate customer with rational actions based on strong principles of service.
  • Competence- Effectively and efficiently acting and working toward concrete solutions will show your customers that their needs matter to you and that you are willing to go the extra mile for them.


Employees and companies who display all of these characteristics are employees that others want to work with or work for.  Building and strengthening the four “C’s” (compassion, calm, confidence, and competence) will not only improve your performance during stressful encounters with irate customers, it will also improve your overall career trajectory, making you someone others notice and even seek out.


How to master Customer service is all about how you continue to seek out professional development opportunities.  Take on every difficult situation you can on the job.  Volunteer to help every customer with a problem.  Never stop learning and the results will be….no irate customer stands a chance.

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