Tips on how to manage a difficult client

Communication tips do you have to keep things on track. When and how to cut ties if they become too difficult to work with?

Tip 1: Stay calm. Model the behavior you want them to exhibit. By staying calm you don’t join them at their level – you elevate them to yours. Bonus is – when you are calm – you make fewer mistakes and you don’t allow them to bully you into doing something you shouldn’t be doing.

Tip 2: Redirect to rational problem solving.  If they are trying to bully, you into doing something you shouldn’t be doing – don’t roll over for them. Just keep saying – I’m sorry – we can’t do it that way – but perhaps we can solve your problem in another way. Your goal is to get them to engage in calm rational problem solving. You want to help them, but they need to allow you to help them before you can. Your mantra – I’m sorry – but perhaps we can solve this problem in a different way.

Tip 3: If they refuse to work collaboratively and rationally – allow them to choose to leave you.  Don’t get upset about this. You can help – if they let you. If they don’t – that’s on them. Often, when they try someplace else and also can’t get their problem solved – they come back as your biggest fan.

FYI – I have a video course, DVD and streaming video on this called How to Handle Cranky Customer Problems Using Behavioral Science.  Working on making it available as an ebook as well  - should be available by December as an ebook and audio book.  And yes - I can do this as a group training.

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