Working with computers, especially broken or misbehaving ones, is not easy for everyone. Of course, almost no one is having a good time when a computer or program they rely on suddenly becomes problematic, but some people handle this better or worse than others. Members of your IT Help Desk team can be considered pros when it comes to resisting the frustration of a broken computer but your clients may be a completely different story. They probably tried to fix it themselves at least once and, having failed to do this, are feeling a combination of disappointment, frustration, and embarrassment at not being up to the repair and even a bit of betrayal because they trusted the machine or program to work for them.
This is a heady cocktail and can lead customers, even those that are usually very well mannered, to be terse, upset, or angry when on the phone with their IT help desk technician. Fortunately, all your staff needs is a little patience and a few positive techniques to cheer their customers up by the end of the call.
Bring the Positivity
From the moment you answer a call, a help desk technician needs to be a source of positivity. This doesn’t necessarily mean overwhelming cheerfulness, just a generally upbeat attitude and friendly demeanor. Because many customers call in a bad mood, this permeating positivity will help keep their negative feelings from making the entire encounter an unpleasant one for both parties. Remember that you are the expert and are here to help them with whatever the problem might be.
Don’t Take Offence
When customers call in angry, upset, or disappointed, it’s all too easy to transfer those bad feelings onto the company and its representatives. Some customers might be bitter, accusatory, or just downright mean, but it’s important not to take these things personally. They don’t know you, this is their frustration speaking and if you can solve their problem, or even just give it a good try, their feelings are likely to change. Let their negativity slide off you and maintain your positive attitude.
Listen to the Whole Story
Many customers, when asked to explain their problem, will launch into an entire personal narrative of their experience with the bug or malfunction. While it may be tempting to ask them to cut to the chase, it is often more beneficial to let them finish. The story telling acts as a form of venting, gets some of the frustration off their chest, and often contains important details about why their computer may be having problems.
Alleviate Tension with Humor
Some of the embarrassment and nervousness your customers feel when asking for technical help can be eased with amusing stories about other people who found themselves facing a similar error. Even if the problem was caused by client actions, this will help them understand that computer problems happen to everyone and might even get them laughing.
Explain the Solution
When you finally discover the source of their problem and implement a solution, don’t leave them in the dark about it. Make the customer part of the solution by explaining it to them, along with why the trouble shooting steps you went through together revealed the fix. This makes customers feel included, like they’re on the team, and may help them to avoid this problem in the future.
Offer Something Extra
When all is said and done, whether or not you were able to fix their problem, always ask if there’s something more you can do. Often there isn’t, but sometimes a customer will have a question they’ve been wanting to ask or a small account management task they haven’t been able to accomplish. With this simple act of good customer service, you gain their gratitude and show that their needs really do matter to you.
When you follow these simple steps, most help desk customers will feel better about you and the company by the time the ticket is closed. All you need is positivity, patience, and an inclusive attitude to turn even the most distraught customer into your trouble shooting ally. For more helpful tips on IT help desks, contact us today!