Customers are CRYING out—Listen to Me!

By John Burwell, Service and Sales Coach

Crying outWe all can think of a time when our significant other felt like we were not listening to them mainly because they told us so. How about the time one of our kids were wanting something so bad that they relentlessly beg us to listen to them because it was the most important thing in the world. In both these cases all they wanted was for us to listen to them and do it fully.

The majority of the times our customer will not tell us the way our kids or significant others will. This is for a variety of reasons such as, they don’t want to come across as rude, stupid, get uncomfortable, or may not even know it yet. People have become used to not being listen to which doesn’t mean they like it. They will always  give us signals showing their dislike. By being aware we are able to pick up on these signals and address them.  Here are a few signals to look for:

  • An expression (squinting of the eyes, wrinkle of the nose, lowering of the eye brows.)
  • A gesture (shrug of the shoulder, interrupting you, looking away, becoming disinterested.)

These things cause us to lose the connection with our customer we have been working to established so far in the call. This connection is so important and tied to the outcome we are striving for. Here are some key things we can do to maintain this connection:

  1. Listen fully (good eye contact, be mindful of your expressions—show understanding with a slight smile and occasional nod of the head)
  2. Give them your undivided attention (nothing is more important in this moment than the customer in front of you right here right now. Don’t allow your attention to drift)
  3. Ask questions & take notes (these allow the customer to see that by your actions you are listening)

When we pay attention to the signals our customers are giving us and keep a strong connection, we will create an environment for them to be open to all the recommendations we have for them.