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    4 Ways to Handle Difficult Customer Service Situations

    Communication mistakes

    When customer service is at the center of your job, you are bound to encounter a few uncomfortable and difficult customer service situations. Good companies realize that excellent service can’t be derived from a script. But just like best practices for a business, there are best responses to 4 common customer service scenarios as suggested by Help Scout.

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    Difficult Customer Service Situation #1: When an Item is Unavailable

    Despite the company’s best attempts, sometimes there are hiccups in inventory flow and products become unavailable. When this happens, use positive language. Positive language places focus on solutions. Here is an example:

    Negative Language: “We don’t have that item. It won’t be available until next week.”
    Positive Language: “I have some great news. That item will be available next week.”
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    Difficult Customer Service Situation #2: When Transferring a Customer

    It is important to transfer the customer quickly to a department or person who can solve the customer’s issue. And be sure to explain why you are transferring them so they don’t feel dismissed.

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    Difficult Customer Service Situation #3: When You Don’t Have a Clue

    There will inevitably be a problem or question that you don’t know the answer to. When this happens, place emphasis on finding the answer. For example:

    Customer: “Does the Deluxe package come with _____?”
    Agent: “Great question. Let me find that out for you.”
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    Difficult Customer Service Situation #4: Angry Customer

    When you encounter an angry customer, it is vital that you stay calm.

    • Apologize and Accept Responsibility. Even if you don’t believe the company is at fault.
    • Sympathize. This will show the customer that you take their issue seriously.
    • Assist. Generally it is simple to fix the actual problem. But make sure to fix the ‘emotional’ problem by calming the customer down and ensuring they leave happy.

    Deal with Customer Complaints like a Pro

    Handling customer complaints is something that every professional in customer service must do well. Often a negative experience can be turned into an opportunity to create a new positive experience that will ensure customers return to your business. Customer Service website, Help Scout, relays 5 essential tips to turn customer complaints into future praise.

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    Take Every Customer Seriously.

    Treat every customer as if they were a celebrity with access to thousands of fans. This will guide your customer interaction, body language, and words so that you can avoid bad publicity for your business.[/column]

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    Recognize and Record Meaningful Customer Complaints.

    These are complaints that continuously pop up among a variety of customers over a significant period of time. They may contain some insight into a bad policy or practice that could lead to loss of sales. [/column]

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    Transfer Customers Quickly with an Explanation.

    Once you’ve accessed what the problem is, transfer the customer to the department or expert that can assist them best. Transferring a complaint is not rude – it is good business sense. Explain to the customer why you are transferring the call so they don’t feel like you are blowing them off. They are more likely to be satisfied with a solution prescribed by the designated department or expert.[/column]

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    Drop Formalities.

    Customer service research suggests that customers want to feel like they are talking to a person, not a corporation when they have an issue. Why? Because people have the ability to be sympathetic and personable. So approach customer interactions as if they were “chat” sessions as opposed to business presentations.[/column]

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    Avoid Overcompensation.

    If your business is at fault, ask the customer what they think is fair compensation. Most of the time their solution is less costly than yours.[/column] [/note]

    Customer complaints are inevitable. Handle them like a pro with these few tips.

    Start Work Now in your Virtual Office

    young business man working in a virtual office

    Recent trends in customer service show that the use of the virtual office has seen a rise. More than 250,000 Americans work “virtually” from home, preferring low stress home environments and flexible hours over office politics and a set work schedule.

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    What is contributing to the rise of the work at home (WAH) virtual office?

    [column size=”1/1″][note note_color=”#EFEFEF”]Easy Technology.modern virtual office
    More and more homes in the United States have access to high-speed broadband connectivity. Technology like printers, video conferencing equipment, high speed computers, and home office suites have become more affordable, so almost anyone can buy or rent all of the components needed for a home office.[/note][/column] [column size=”1/2″ last=”0″][note note_color=”#EFEFEF”]WAH Increases Productivity.
    Recent studies have proven that people who work from home are more productive than when working in a traditional office environment. The lack of chatter, background noise, co-worker activity, and supervisor checkups makes virtual professionals more productive in shorter periods of time.[/note][/column]

    [column size=”1/2″ last=”1″][note note_color=”#EFEFEF”]Saves Businesses Money.
    Virtual offices save businesses money in labor and overhead. A recent business report states that the average mid-sized company can save at least $10,000 per year by outsourcing business functions. These savings are derived from reduced turnover, office space rental, reduced utilities, and more productivity.[/note][/column] [column size=”1/2″ last=”0″][note note_color=”#EFEFEF”]Virtual Professionals save Money.
    The boss is not the only who saves money. The average WAH employee will save between $2,000 and $6,800 per year. This savings comes mainly from a reduction in fuel costs and the cost of lunch [1].[/note][/column]

    [column size=”1/2″ last=”1″][note note_color=”#EFEFEF”]The Government Loves the Virtual Office.
    In a country where municipalities, cities, and states are running out of real estate, the United States government offers tax incentives for telework programs because they don’t require any extra real estate.[/note][/column]

    The virtual office needs hard working professionals to assist businesses around the world. These are only a few of the benefits that this booming industry offers. Begin a rewarding career as a virtual professional now.

    Get started today.

    [divider top=”no”] [1]”Virtual Contact Centers and Home Based Customer Service Jobs on the Rise.” Pajama Jobs, 1 Jan. 2014. Web. 22 Jan. 2014.

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    Live the Lifestyle Driven Model

    lifestyle driven model of success

    Ditch the office and join the lifestyle driven model where you work to live; not live to work. Virtual teams used to be a way for companies to reduce overhead. Now more and more employees are demanding a lifestyle driven schedule from their employers. A lifestyle driven model is a schedule that workers personalize to meet their individual needs. The days of working 8 to 5 are over. Now independent professionals have the option to work for any company, anywhere, during the hours of their choice!

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    Benefits of a Lifestyle Driven Model

    thumbs up to the lifestyle driven model

    The lifestyle-driven virtual team is a realistic option for most professional service firms because their work is knowledge based. With the right planning, and equipment, many service professionals can perform their jobs from a home office. At the heart of the virtual team model, is a shift from a focus on billable hour targets, to compensation for employee requested hours [1].

    For some, the prospect of not receiving a regular paycheck is enough for them to forgo the virtual team market. However, there are many virtual professionals who earn more compensation as an hourly worker than as a salaried employee. The old traditional billable model, expects employees to work 45 hours or more per week, but the lifestyle-driven virtual model offers more flexibility. And virtual professionals often get to pick their own projects, giving them more power and satisfaction than traditional work. Traditional benefits like paid vacation, pensions, and health benefits are generally not offered by virtual professional services, though more services are offering health benefits.
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    So the lifestyle driven model provides practitioners with more flexibility, more choices for employment, the opportunity to work from home, the power to choose their own projects, and potentially more money.

    Why not learn more about becoming a virtual team member today.

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    [1] Lekushoff, Andrea. “Lifestyle-driven Virtual Teams: A New Paradigm for Professional Services Firms – Ivey Business Journal.” LIFESTYLE-DRIVEN VIRTUAL TEAMS: A NEW PARADIGM FOR PROFESSIONAL SERVICES FIRMS. Ivey Business Journal, 1 Sept. 2012. Web. 21 Jan. 2014.
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    Why being a virtual professional is for you!

    join us

    According to international business website – MarketWatch – the economic downturn has generated the need for a multitude of back-office positions, including the virtual professional (VP). MarketWatch logo In fact, the demand for virtual professionals jumped 18% in 2012, along with the professional services that they offer.

    Career outlook for VPs has never been better. In the same article, MarketWatch listed the top 50 freelance careers in the United States. The virtual assistant came in as #12 on the list. This means the need for competent VPs is growing faster than web designers, telemarketers, and even social networking assistants!

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    So what does this mean for you as a virtual professional?

    [dropcap style=”simple”]1[/dropcap] As more traditional staffing options begin to wane, businesses will start looking for alternative staffing solutions.

    [dropcap style=”simple”]2[/dropcap] If trends hold true, now is the perfect time to become a virtual professional.

    [dropcap style=”simple”]3[/dropcap]There will be a lot of unaccredited “virtual assistant schools” that will provide subpar training for your hard earned money.

    [dropcap style=”simple”]4[/dropcap] Setting yourself apart by developing and marketing your skills is more important than ever.

    [dropcap style=”simple”]5[/dropcap] Joining a credible and dependable VP service to provide superior and extensive training is a must to stay competitive and get the best job opportunities.
    [/note] [spacer] [column size=”1/2″ last=”0″] Assist A Boss is the premiere virtual service center. We will prepare you for a successful career as a virtual professional. Founded by a group of corporate professionals, we know what skills you need to excel. Assist A Boss is so dedicated to your success, we offer extensive training options and full reimbursement once training is complete.

    Why?

    Because talented professionals deserve the flexibility, freedom, and security that a career as a virtual professional affords. Start now.
    [/column] [column size=”1/2″ last=”1″] virtual professional opportunity just ahead
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