How do we lose self-control with angry customers?
Every one of us has experienced getting angry, and behaved in angry or hostile ways, so we all have some sense as to how it happens. Still, it’s useful to review the pattern.
When we lose a bit of our self-control, we are usually responding to specific things that the other person is saying or
doing. We call these things “triggers”, though you may be more familiar with the phrase “getting your buttons pushed”.
When you get triggered, you tend to react quickly and with little thought - what we call a knee-jerk reaction.
That is why the loss of control is so dangerous. Recall that in an earlier section we mentioned that angry behavior is learned very young, and that when people are under stress, they tend to go back to ways of responding that remain from childhood. These immediate, almost automatic responses are almost always the incorrect ones.
This is one situation where your immediate gut reaction is going to get you into trouble.
By acting quickly, you will enter into the escalation cycle, and as both people get angrier, the interaction moves faster and faster, and becomes more intense. As the pace quickens and intensifies, neither party listens.
Two Ways To Appear To Maintain Self-Control
With respect to maintaining selfcontrol, the critical part is appearing to the customer like you master your emotional reactions. Two ways: You simply don’t GET upset at nasty customer antics OR, you do get upset and you mask it so the customer doesn’t get the satisfaction from it. Guess which is best?