Dealing with angry people may be comparable to taking a lava bath. Not only can it instantly throw you out of balance, but it can also ruin your entire day. Unfortunately, angry customers are inevitable notwithstanding which section of the food service industry you work in, even your food truck. How you handle them determines your success as a food truck business owner. Today, the team of Legion Food Trucks offers you five helpful tips by which you can handle difficult customers.
1. It’s Your Food Truck Business, but The Customer Is Always Right
Customer satisfaction is one of the most important key performance metrics in the foodservice business. Old wisdom has it that no matter the situation, the customer is always right. A better way to put this into perspective is that a customer is never wrong.
It is important to understand that tastes, expectations, and preferences vary from one customer to the next. If the customer feels that your food is not salty enough, is undercooked, or overcooked, they are not wrong. It is what they want and how they feel. Understanding this important difference will offer you the right mindset to excel in customer satisfaction. Also, train your staff to have this mindset when handling upset customers.
If you want to calm down an angry customer quickly, pay attention. Carefully listen to your customers when they complain about your food truck service or menu. Maintain eye contact with them to make them feel that you are genuinely interested in what they have to say. Remember to say, “I understand.” Such simple words can be enough to calm them down.
3. Put Down Your Defenses
You may have put your heart and soul into planning your menu, preparing the meals, and making other arrangements. This effort may make you take your customers’ complaints personally. Be careful not to fall into this trap. While you should be proud of yourself for all the tireless effort you made, you have to drop your defenses when handling an angry customer.
4. Acknowledge the Complaint
It does not matter whether or not you feel you are responsible for the complaints made by the customer. The customer has chosen to complain to you. Notwithstanding the nature of the business, the buck stops with you as the owner of the food truck business. Offering a sincere apology is the best way to handle such complaints.
5. Propose a Solution That Benefits Your Food Truck Business
In any foodservice business, offering a solution is the only way to de-escalate a raging customer. Once you have carefully listened to the complaint and apologized, you need to offer a solution, and quickly. Sometimes it may mean preparing another meal. If this is not possible, you can offer them an alternative dish at no additional cost. At other times, neither of the suggested solutions will appease the upset customer. When this happens, you must refund them their money.
An Optimist’s Perspective
Unfortunately, there will always be a dissatisfied customer no matter how much of a perfectionist you are. The good news is, upset customers are the best learning tools a mobile food business can have. At Legion Food Trucks, we are aware of this and that is why we put our customers at the center of everything we do. Contact us today to help you turn your angry customers into invaluable assets.