Break It Up

How to deal when a customer doesn't like your rep
Magazine Contributor
2 min read

This story appears in the April 2006 issue of . Subscribe »

If a customer calls to grouse about one of your sales reps, what should you do? Assuming you're otherwise happy with this rep, Bette Price, author of True Leaders and president of The Price Group, an Addison, Texas, firm that specializes in leadership development issues, suggests some ways to finesse this sticky situation.

  • Listen Up. Price encourages sales managers to "sincerely convey that the customer's continued satisfaction is exceedingly important." Get details by asking the client what he or she thinks caused the situation. Neutral questioning will help you determine whether the relationship can be salvaged.

  • Reassign the account. If the customer simply will not work with the rep, don't push the issue. If you can, assign a rep whose work style better matches the customer's needs. If you have only one rep, you may need to take on the account.

  • Look to internal causes. If a rep is struggling with a customer, Price points out that he or she may need more training to understand how to recognize and adapt to behavior styles other than his or her own.

  • Cut the customer loose only as a last resort. Says Price, "Unless the customer is unrealistic to the point where it's evident that he or she will continue to be a problem, [it's not] in your best interest to fire the customer."

More from Entrepreneur

Are paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.
Get Your Quote Now

One-on-one online sessions with our experts can help you start a business, grow your business, build your brand, fundraise and more.
Book Your Session

Whether you are launching or growing a business, we have all the business tools you need to take your business to the next level, in one place.
Enroll Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.

It Started As a Joke and Turned Into a Startup That Raised $1 Million in Funding