Sometimes we can’t fix a customer complaint. Tactical empathy helps you to focus on the customer instead of your short comings. To uncover the impact for the customer. And to open up alternate solution spaces.
In my latest blog post, I tell a story about a muddled conversation where everyone’s intention was good. Only the execution didn’t quite deliver.
It’s a saga, with a lesson in it.
>>> Curious? Head over here to read the post.
It all happened in the informal chat window that occurs ahead of a Zoom call for a personal membership I attend.
One member complained that the company was tone deaf about a problem that others were complaining about in the FB group. A problem that can’t be fixed right now.
The leader went into over explain mode about the issues the company was dealing with trying to resolve the issue.
I added to the muddle when in advice monster mode, I pointed out that talking about the company’s struggles rather than the customers, well, sounded tone deaf.
And the member raising the issue never really revealed her personal take on the problem.
On reflection, I realize we all could have benefited by using the skills advocated by the Black Swan Group.
Accusation Audits to strategize how we will deal with scenarios we can’t solve. Labels and dynamic silence to express empathy. Calibrated what and how questions to get at the underlying issues and alternatives
I apologized later for stepping in when it wasn’t my place to do so. I didn’t exercise my advice monster yet again by discussing my afterthoughts. Instead, I committed to trying to do better the next time.
Does the story resonate with you? How do you respond to customer complaints when there is no real fix? Have you experienced similar messy meetings? Do you think tactical empathy would help you in those situations?