How to deal with angry pharmacy customers
1) SCRAP THE EXCUSES & APOLOGISE
Never give an excuse to justify poor service. Statements like “sorry we didn’t have enough staff” or “it was very busy” add more fuel to the fire. Take full responsibility even if it was another colleagues fault. You are the responsible pharmacist on your shift and are responsible everything. Sometimes it’s better to keep a patient than to be right.
2) CALL THEM BY THEIR NAME
People feel very special when you call them by their names. It is said that calling a person by their name creates an instant connection with them. Saying sorry ‘Harry’ or ‘Mr blogs’ is more personal than sorry ‘sir’ or ‘madam’. Call the patient by their name to build instant rapport with them and make them perceive you as a friend, it will also help calm them down
3) ISOLATE, LISTEN & TONE DOWN
Always isolate a patient to calm them down if you can. Sitting an angry patient down in a separate area or a consultation room makes them feel valued and complimented by your full attention. It also prevents other patients from feeling uncomfortable. Listen without interrupting. Sometimes that’s all the patient needs. A low voice tone shows empathy and emotion. Acknowledge the patient’s frustration with statements such as “I understand, if I was in your shoes, I’d feel the same way too”. Such statements instantly calm patients down.
4) RESOLVE & ACT
Always conclude your discussion with an angry patient with a solution to resolve the patients’ problem. Do not leave the patient without suggesting a solution. Tell the patient a list of actions you will take. Statements like ‘i will leave a note for the manager’ does not inspire confidence. Give a list of actions, I will…I will…I will…
Guest blog by Marvin Munzu