Staying Cool Under Pressure: Mastering the Art of Conflict Resolution

There is nothing more hair-raising than dealing with an irate or dissatisfied customer. Human nature prompts us to lash back out at those who lash out at us.

However, there is truly an art to resolving conflicts. Here are some helpful tips to staying cool and calm when under pressure as a result of a customer that is just not happy.

Lower Your Voice

It is a proven fact that lowering your voice an octave or two from the level of the irate customer has a calming effect on the person that is verbally attacking you.

Listen to What They’re Saying

Stop and listen! When someone is upset, and yelling and screaming at you, instead of immediately reacting, just listen to hear what they’re really saying. This way you can obtain a much quicker resolution.


Although it may not be easy and the irate customer may not positively respond, apologize for the inconvenience the client has experienced. Sometimes that may be all the client desires.

Be Patient

Patience and kindness will calm most customers that are upset. Stay the course and search for that peaceful resolution. Give them a little time to gather their thoughts, and assure them that you are committed to their happiness.

Add a Special Touch

After coming to a resolution, create a little something extra to make the customer feel that they’re valued. Despite the way they made you feel, they will appreciate VIP treatment from you. A little gift or an extra service that you can throw in creates a special touch that they will never forget.

While dealing with irate customers is not always easy, the satisfaction of knowing that you put forth your best effort to address their concerns and provide an equitable solution to the problem leaves you feeling good, and the customer walking away feeling that you cared. It’s worth the extra effort to satisfy the client and have a customer that returns due to your great service, than a customer who leaves feeling dissatisfied and can damage the reputation of your company.

By Monique Stubbs-Hall, business consultant and entrepreneur coach. Visit to learn more about her public speaking, business consulting and coaching services.

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