We can find a two types of customers in a telephone consultant job (yes, I know – customers can be categorized into an infinite number of types, but for the purposes of this article – so in the context of customer service, we will divide them into two groups).
“The Chatterbox” – that is, I talk to myself because I like it
The first type of client is the so-called chatterbox. Usually an extrovert who likes people, is curious about the world and just loves to chat.
This is the type of customer who calls the online store asking about the length of the warranty. Even when the website shows in black and white that there is a 3-year warranty for this vacuum cleaner. Despite the fact that the inscription “3 years warranty” is enlarged, framed with signs and exclamation marks and in addition in red – the guy calls to ask ARE YOU FOR SURE? By the way, he has hundreds of other questions.
Prepare for loooooong talk…
He wants to find out if the filters are of the right quality, because he is allergic. Is the pipe as long as specified? Because he likes to dance samba while vacuuming and whether the vacuum cleaner is for electricity…Because he is afraid that the manufacturer could mislead him and it could turn out that the vacuum cleaner is steam powered … And his oak furniture would not withstand the excessive humidity that a steam engine would generate … By the way, he will ask about the weather in the region. He will try to get advice on the best food for his cat, complain about his wife, children and high fuel prices, and recite a poem he wrote yesterday to celebrate the 10th anniversary of building a great gazebo on his plot.
You have no chance of avoiding these types of clients. If you are an introvert, this may prove to be your biggest challenge. If you also like to chat, such conversations will be a nice pause for you and a break from the daily routine of a telephone consultant.
“Silent” – or if it is not necessary, then why talk?
As a telephone consultant, you will also come across a second type of client. This is the so-called “Mr. Silent”, also known as “want-to-do-it-as-fast-using-as-few-words-as possible.” When he calls you, you can expect long pauses, scenes like “ummm”, “erghhh”, “uhhh” and “I don’t know”. Each word will be spoken with the effort of a strongman who is trying to break the record in the deadlift. In addition, his tone will indicate a deep depression, which is usually not true – it’s just a side effect of having to complete this extremely difficult task now and get a few words on the phone because the situation is bad and the credit card he has lost – has to be blocked. Such a client calls only when he has to, and if something can be done via e-mail or chat – he will not call, even if it requires a dedication 10 times longer.
Adapt or disconnect
Regardless of what type of customer you get on your usual telephone consultant day, you should feel who you are dealing with and adapt to their needs. In the case of “The Chatterbox” – talk and – it is very important – ask. Ask about his oak furniture. About their cat, name, breed, and praise an extremely innovative gazebo that you have never seen before in your life and probably never will. You should know everything and more – things he hasn’t even mentioned yet, although there’s a very good chance that you probably don’t care at all.
By asking questions, you build a relationship and make the client like you. Believe me, it works. Dale Carnegie wrote about it a long time ago in his book “How To Win Friends and Influence People”. And although it may happen that the customer does not buy anything – or he does nothing, even though you talked to him for an hour – don’t worry. 200% chance that such a customer will advertise your company and you. Because on the same day he will tell all his colleagues what a great store or company he called. And – of course – about helpful and cool employees who work there. An invaluable benefit – if you have a business – free advertising. If you work for a company – you can expect a phone call asking to speak to you directly. This will build your position and may lead you to a promotion or a raise.
Be quick and precise
In turn, with “Mr. Silence” you must settle the matter as soon as possible, under no circumstances ask unnecessary questions. You can only express (in one SHORT sentence that you understand how important it is to him and his time). Without unnecessary discussions, digressions and deliberations. Take a task-oriented approach to work. Then – Mr. Silent will present you and the company in which you work to his colleagues as a role model. And the best of all companies in the world.
Of course, these two types of client are quite a generalization. But remember – that such diversification will help you develop the right course of action. It also will make you better and better as a telephone consultant. You can also check what I have prepared for you in the book “How to work in a call center without going crazy”. In this ebook I will help you increase the quality and comfort of your work.