Dealing with Difficult Customers and Situations

Course Aims:

Occasionally customer facing staff have to deal with frustrated, aggressive or difficult customers and this course is designed to equip them with the necessary skills and confidence to deal with these situations effectively.

Course Objectives:

At the end of this course delegates will be able to:

  • Manage customer expectations and problems constructively.
  • Have difficult conversations with customers and deal with tricky or aggressive customers and situations successfully.
  • Be able to predict the escalation of a potentially aggressive incident.
  • Increase their personal resilience and be able to deal with the impact of a difficult incident.


1 day/In house

Difficult or tricky customers interactions

  • What is a tricky or difficult customer interaction?
  • What happens in a customer conflict situation
  • Recognising a potentially aggressive incident

Communicating clearly and assertively

  • Responses to difficult types of behaviour (passive, aggressive, assertive)
  • Assertive communication techniques
  • Assertiveness tools
  • Building trust and rapport

Handling difficult customer conversations

  • Prevention is better than cure
  • Being clear about the outcomes you want
  • How to conduct a difficult conversation
  • Key Tools
  • Saying ‘no’ effectively

Dealing with difficult responses

  • Key ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’
  • Predicting aggression
  • Maintaining composure
  • Calming people down
  • Tools for dealing with confrontation and aggression

Developing personal resilience

  • Concept of personal resilience
  • Calming yourself down
  • Increasing resilience and managing stress
  • In the moment
  • In the long term

Customer interactions skills practice

  • Case studies and role play
Action planning
  • Transferring learning back to the workplace