Join Fancy Mills for an in-depth discussion in this video Customer behavior profiles: Timid, part of IT Service Desk: Customer Service Fundamentals.
- The last profile we'll cover is the timid customer. These are the customers who are unsure of what's going on; may blame themselves thinking they've caused the issue. They may not really be familiar with technology or processes or even what they're supposed to say. They are often completely lost. Let's listen to an example. - Hi, are you still there? - Oh yes, sorry. - Okay, great, how can I help you today? - Well I'm not sure what I did. I think I broke my machine. - Okay and what happened? - Well I tried to move the mouse where I login and I couldn't.
- Are you trying to log in to an application or into your system? - Well what's the difference? - Well, you put your password in your computer to log in the entire machine, then you may need to log in to a application, like TMS software. You use that right? - Oh yes, I use TMS all the time but, so I'm trying to get into the application. - Okay, which application? - The one we use for time sheets. - Okay, there's a time sheet tracker and tracker tools. Which one do you use? - I think I use both.
- You might have in the past. We're just starting with everyone to the trackers tool, so that might be what you're trying to log in to. Can you look on your desktop to see if you have that icon on there? - I'm looking, but I don't see it. My system's kind of a mess. - Would you like for me to assist by remoting into your machine? - Sure. - In this example, we heard a customer who is a little lost, unsure, and thinks he broke something on his machine. Timid customers, often don't use proper lanaguage, can't give specific information, and often use the phrase, I think.
They will sometimes pause during the conversation to think about what to say or to search for the information that we've just requested. It can be like pulling teeth or going on a treasure hunt to find the information that we need. Let's look at our strategies for how to handle the timid profile. First, we want to recognize that we have a timid customer, words and tone are our first clue. Often as technicians, we move fast, we want to fix the issue quickly and move on.
With these customers, we need to take a breath, take a moment, and slow down. Also listen carefully for their descriptive words. The customer may be confused and using the wrong words to describe things. If they are, you can politely share the correct terminology for them to use in the future. Here's an example. - I'm trying to get into the H drive to find a personnel file. - So you're looking for a personnel file correct? - Yes. - Okay, those are stored on a K drive and I see that you do have permissions for that.
Do you need help to access it? - Oh no, that's okay. I thought it was the H drive, sorry. - The questions we use, need to be very direct, specific, in guiding our customers. We typically try to use closed ended questions in the beginning with timid customers, but we'll need to use open questions to gather more information. Lastly, with timid customers, it's helpful to use your tools. These tools can be remoting into the customer's machine, using video conferencing, or sending a technician on-site.
Whatever tools you have at your disposal, use them. Timid customers don't have to make us pull our hair out. Slow down, take a breath, and use the strategies that will best work for the customer. By taking time and taking care of a timid customer, you'll give them confidence, and provide excellent customer service.
First, Fancy provides guidance on how to use the right types of questions to gather information about an issue. Then, she explains how to professionally handle common customer service tasks, like escalating and transferring calls. Then, she shows how to hone interactions with customers by refining communications—acknowledging how tone and word choice can diffuse tension. She wraps up by covering common customer behavior scenarios in which the tools, techniques, and strategies from the course can be applied.
- Greeting and validating contacts
- Asking investigative and diagnostic questions
- Confirming and validating responses
- Reaching resolution and closure
- Using mute or hold on a call
- Escalating or transferring a call
- Building rapport over the phone, in writing, and face-to-face
- Refining word choice, style, and tone
- Managing conflict effectively
- Recovering unsatisfied customers
- Redirecting customers
- Identifying customer behavior