What Is “disengaging from angry customer”, and what is it used for?

Disengaging with a customer provides you with breathing space and time for both people to calm down and focus on solving a problem

What Is “disengaging from angry customer”, and what is it used for?

An angry person tend to to act or think as rationally compared to a calm person. There are times, when dealing with an angry or irate customer, that you should recognize that so long as the customer is over-emotional, you won’t be able to accomplish anything, and attempts to reason or explain to such a customer are often wasted, and frustrating.

Disengagement from a customer, is in effect, taking a time-out from the interaction with the customer, although it is not meant to be punitive. The reasoning is that if the customer (and you, by the way) have some time to calm down, and compose him or herself, when you resume the interaction, it may go more smoothly. This tends to work with customers who are not “nasty” people, and tends to work with normal, regular, nice folks who are temporarily cranked up emotionally.

Often, a few minutes of disengagement will result in such a customer realizing he or she is acting badly (and not in his or her own best interests), and actually apologize.

It’s important to offer a reason for disengaging and to offer a time span (I’ll be back in two minutes, since I’ll need to be sure we have the correct information about your account). Do NOT say: “We need a time out here so you can calm down”. That almost always backfires.

Author: Robert Bacal

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