It is very common to encounter clients that are finicky and difficult to deal with, especially as a small business owner. These clients are usually quick to criticize, energy-draining, and slow with their payments.
This is often why people consider outsourcing customer service for their business so that they can focus more on the main activities of the business instead of having to directly interact with such clients. Beyond business-client settings, you will encounter such people in real life and it is a crucial life skill to be able to detach from negativity, remain neutral, and find win-win solutions for all parties involved.
So let us explore some methods you can employ to deal with finicky clients.
Be Careful With What You Say
A common error that is made when dealing with clients is to use language that can be perceived as confrontational, says Deepak Kharbanda.
Clients are paying you money to provide a service and they expect to feel like their needs are being met. It is important to remain professional when dealing with them and to use neutral language, which makes them feel heard. A tactic you can employ is to mirror back the terms they use so that there’s no room for conflict.
Customers and clients may feel entitled to your services because they’ve paid, and may project an air of self-importance, which a smart business owner should not take personally or react to.
Deepak Kharbanda says it’s unrealistic to think that you can avoid interacting with finicky clients forever, and it’s best to learn how to deal with them effectively, without getting overly frustrated in dealing with their endless criticisms.
It’s better to have a positive outlook and focus on the pros such as expanding your skillset in dealing with such people (and in general) and the character-building that comes along with it.
Recognize That It May Not be Your Fault
Sometimes there’s a personality conflict where there’s just no getting through to the other side. If there have been various attempts at resolving conflicts to no avail, it may be better to assign or pass on the project to someone else from your team.
Your mental health is more important than engaging in petty squabbles, and if it’s taking away from your ability to do your job well, consider changing projects or letting your team members handle it. Suggest to your client in the most professional and neutral way possible that it may be better if someone else handles their project.
Be sure to not sound sarcastic or annoyed, since that can be construed as passive-aggressive, and simply let someone else handle the clients’ work instead, says Deepak Kharbanda.
Stop Working With Them
If all else fails and you are simply done with dealing with their requests, consider terminating any mutual projects or in the case of services provided, offer a refund and move on.
This can save you time working with more productive clients who are more pleasant to deal with.
It is significant to learn the suitable abilities to develop great communication aimed at reaching goals instead of wasting time arguing about who’s right and wrong. At last Deepak Kharbanda, says to be prepared to burn bridges if necessary and remember to not take things personally.