Good Business Practice – Identifying Customer’s Specific Needs

Identifying customer needs or concerns involves:

  • Active listening––allowing the customer to explain their need or concern, without trying to solve the problem immediately
  • Questioning––using questions such as reflective questioning techniques to draw out the exact need or concern
  • Paraphrasing––repeating the need or concern back to the customer in your own words to check you’ve understood it correctly
  • Developing an action plan for a solution when the customer starts to calm down and then repeating what was agreed on as an action plan
  • Encouraging customer to propose solution
  • Deciding on the urgency of the customer’s needs

Do not:

  • Take things personally – they’re angry at the organisation not you for expectations not being met
  • Present respond a bureaucratic way – let them see you as a human being doing your best to help
  •  Ignore difficult customers – problems will escalate

Train yourself and/ or your staff and maximise your performance. Check out the business courses offered by the Flexlearn Institute (www.flexlearn.edu.au ).

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