Don't Be Negative! Be Positively Negative!
By: Mike Lipshultz

If a customer asks you a question that you don’t know the answer to, don’t say, "I don’t know". Instead say, "let me get that information for you". Never tell the customer to call you back later. Tell the customer you would be happy to call him back, and then ask for his name and number. Think about it. If you tell the customer to call you 1) you’re making him do the work, 2) he may never call you back and you lose the opportunity, 3) by getting the customer’s name and number, you can control the opportunity better. You can follow up on the customer. If a customer has a complaint listen to him. Repeat back some of what he said. This lets the customer know that you listened to him. Then, offer a positive solution to the customer. Have you ever discounted a bill to make a customer happy? If so, you’re not doing the best you can. Think about it. Why should the customer come back? You made him mad, he got a discount and left. Next time, try offering a discount or reduced rate on his next visit. Put it in writing possibly on your business card. Now the customer has a reason to return. He will also keep your business card.

Have you ever had a customer ask you for goods or services that you do not deal in? Don’t tell the customer, "no I can’t do that." Handle it in a positive manner. Just tell the customer, "we have a great company that handles that for our customers". Then take the details, along with the customer’s number, and pass the lead on to a trusted business associate that you know that does the work. Hey! Everybody wins. The customer got what he wanted without having to run around. The business you referred the work to got the job, and you look like a hero to both of them. Don’t have a circle of companies to refer business to? Then check out BizNet’s Networking Connection.

So, think about some of those negative things that can happen in your business and see if you can come up with a positive way of dealing with them.

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Last modified: November 08, 2002