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Apr 30
2011

Empower Your Sales Team To Fix Problems

Posted by: Steve Marr

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Offering a listening ear to customers with a complaint is a good first step, but most people want you to go beyond just listening; they want you to take action. The prophet Ezekiel wrote, “My people come pretending to be sincere and sit before you. They listen to your words, but they have no intention of doing what you say” (Ezekiel 33:31 NLT).

Instruct your staff to listen carefully and well to complaints or concerns, and to take notes as needed to remember the specifics of the issue. Also, instruct them as to any action they are empowered to take. If your policy is to say no in a specific instance, then prepare your staff to explain the policy to customers.

If you or other managers are the only ones granted adjustment authority, instruct your staff to make the referrals to you promptly. No customer wants to go through a five-minute story, only to be told to tell the same tale of woe to a manager before anything can be done.

If your staff is empowered to make adjustments or accept returns, make sure each person understands that authority and knows the proper action to take in various instances. Follow up to make sure that customers are responded to with action, rather than just words.

Whenever a customer raises a concern, we owe them an answer—either, no, nothing will be done, or yes, we will take action. Not answering the question should not be an option. Just listening, but not taking action, will only create frustration and a waste of everyone’s time.

King Solomon wrote, “The king is pleased with words from righteous lips; he loves those who speak honestly” (Proverbs 16:13 NLT). Listening and allowing the customer to believe something will be done, but then not acting is a form of dishonest communication. When you take action after listening to customer complaints, those customers will become satisfied and will come back again.

Steve Marr, Your Christian Business Coach

Proverbs for Sales Professionals

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