VUSSC/Content/Tourism/Applying Effective Communication Skills/Handling enquiries
A tour guide will constantly be asked questions. There are times when clients are just requesting information but there will also be times when they are making complaints. This individual needs to be able to respond to any enquiries in order to have a satisfied customer at the end of the conversation.
FOUR STEPS TO HANDLING ENQUIRIES:
- 1.Listen to the client: Be courteous and pay keen attention to what the client has to say
- 2.Take notes: If the information is too much for you to remember or if you are taking the inquiry over the telephone, take notes.
- 3.Repeat information: Paraphrase what the customer has asked in order for you to verify that you have accurate information.
- 4.Honor request: Make sure that you are knowledgeable about your product. If you do not have the answer on hand, assure customer that you will give them requested information as soon as possible.
Complaints should be looked upon positively. It is a way of preventing other complaints. It is also a way of receiving feedback from clients to let you know how you are performing. It is also an opportunity for you to improve your performance.
Techniques for dealing with customer complaints
Angry customers present unique opportunities to re-win their allegiance. Somewhere one or more of their basic expectations were not met, and they are looking for solutions to the problem and some form of recovery. These basic facts are guiding principles for figuring out how to turn the negative into a positive.
1.Listen: focus on what the customer has to say. There is no need to become defensive. Do not interrupt, but questions can be asked to clarify that you understand the problem. Remember to take notes especially if you are receiving the complaint over the telephone
2.Thank the customer: always thank the customer for bringing the problem to your attention.
3.Paraphrase: after the customer is finished, summarize what the customer said to you so that the customer knows that you understand the problem.
4.Show Empathy: show that you understand how the customer feels. There is nothing wrong with apologizing for the customer’s suffering.
5.Act immediately: offer a solution to the problem. It is your responsibility to ensure that the problem is solved. It might be appropriate to ask the customer what can be done to make them satisfied.
6.Follow-up: it is important for you to follow through on any promises that were made to the customer.
Experts say that: ·Customers who complain are likely to tell an average of 10 others about their experience ·66 percent of all those who complain will return, if the problem is resolved.” It is in the interest of the tour guide to furnish information upon request to the customer and to solve all customer complaints in a positive and courteous manner.