More and more we are seeing confrontations at businesses, malls, in traffic, and on the streets. Often the key in handling them without hurting your company reputation is to listen— particularly to your customers. Imagine if United Airlines had listened to the first person who asked them to not eject a customer from their flight. The situation could have been handled so much better by acknowledging they had a point and finding another solution. Here are a few steps your company can take to make sure that your team does better.
- Stop and listen to your customer and the public’s concerns.
- Find another alternative and seek a win-win solution.
- Sometimes an objective observer can find a better solution. In the case of United Airlines and the person they ejected from their seat, it would have been better to explain their crew shortage honestly and offer more money for a ticket.
- Offer empathy. Listen to the complaint and repeat it back to them in an empathetic and understanding way. As you do so, actually pretend it was you or someone you care about with the complaint and you will likely find a solution that addresses their concerns. Most times we just want to feel heard.
- Teach your staff when to contact a manager especially if something is escalating at your property.
- Give your staff the authority to solve problems on the front line and make company policy clear on when it’s okay to be physical (imminent danger) or not.
- Express your concerns so that onlookers can hear and understand your issues and observer your company being professional, reasonable and helpful. If they only hear from the person complaining your company looks like the problem.
- Always try to resolve issues verbally and be friendly and professional-never physically.
- Respectful conversation trumps aggression every time. It calms everyone and the company looks better.
South Bay Security is the local security authority of the South Bay providing patrolling, security and safety programs for residents and businesses in cities from El Segundo to Long Beach. They specialize in protecting their clients’ properties, while upholding the respect and dignity of their clients and their employees, as well as the public. For more information on their mobile security or full service, contact them at 310-539-3505 or by email. Set up a time to review your security needs and address concerns. South Bay Security is located in the Rolling Hills Plaza where they also provide the security, as well as at many other South Bay locations. Visit their website at: southbaysecurity.com.