No matter how professional and efficient your organization is, you’ll have to deal with the occasional unhappy, difficult or angry customer. In the heat of the moment, it can be a struggle to keep calm and find the right words. But, by following these seven steps, it is possible to restore your client’s goodwill and keep his or her custom. Firstly, put yourself in a customer service mindset. Take on board that your client is upset and give him your full attention. Secondly, listen actively to your client’s grievance. If necessary, prompt him with a neutral phrase such as, “Let’s go over what happened.” Don’t plan your response or try to resolve issues while he’s talking. Simply listening is a powerful way of showing you care. Next, calmly repeat his concerns back to him. This demonstrates you were listening carefully and it clarifies the problem. Now that you understand why he’s unhappy, apologize clearly and empathize with him. By Step Five, you may be able to present a solution that you’re confident will make your customer happy. If you’re not sure how he’ll respond, or if he resists your proposal, ask him what would make him happy. Once you’ve agreed a solution, it’s important that you take immediate action and follow up. Explain exactly what you’re going to do, do it, then contact your client again. Finally, use his grievance as a learning opportunity. Minimize the risk of the issue arising again by finding the root cause and fixing it. For more information about dealing with unhappy customers, see the article that accompanies this video.