Running a franchise without an unhappy customer is next to impossible.
But with an effective service recovery program in place, that same customer will return again and again. Such a program enables you to create an even stronger bond with the dissatisfied customer. Here are some tips for an effective recovery program:
1. Actively listen
Allow your customer to tell the entire story from beginning to end and do not interrupt. This discussion may be time-consuming, but to move ahead, your customer must have the time to let off steam.
2. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes
Try to imagine how your customer feels. Although you may not agree completely try to emphasize and show your concern using phrases like “I see that you are frustrated” or “Certainly I can understand your point of view.”
3. Don’t be afraid to apologize
If you were sincerely sorry about the mishap, apologize to your customer. Saying you are sorry speaks volumes for you are acknowledging that you regret your action or lack of action.
4. Act quickly and resolve the problem.
Address the issue quickly. Give your employees the authority to do what it takes to compensate for the mistake. Ask the customer what you can do to make this right. Be eager to bridge the gap by offering some compensation. By showing an eagerness to do right by them, you can begin to close the gap between your customer’s dissatisfied state and where you want them to be.
5. Find out how the mistake occurred.
When the customer is satisfied, it is important to get to the root of the error and see why it happened. Do not blame your employees just bring it to the team’s attention and put in place a process so that it does not happen again.
Remember it is easy to let customers leave your franchise angry or sad. But if you are a successful franchise owner you know the value of customer service and the part that service recovery plays in a successful business.