Coping with challenging clients (2022)

Even though Seattle-area private practitioner Kirk Honda, PsyD, had been a psychotherapist for 15 years, it only took a hostile client a few minutes to make him question his own competence.

He was working with two parents and their daughter, when the father started attacking Honda, making hostile comments about his abilities as a therapist. The daughter soon joined in. "Within 15 minutes, they had completely torn apart my self-esteem," says Honda, who chairs the couple and family therapy program at Antioch University in Seattle. "I started having a mini anxiety attack. I started to sweat. I couldn't think straight. I almost ran out of the office."

(Video) How to Deal with Difficult People | Jay Johnson | TEDxLivoniaCCLibrary

Although the mother stepped in to defend Honda and they eventually repaired their therapeutic relationship, the experience left him shaken. He's not alone. Psychologists sometimes face clients who have personality disorders that prompt them to lash out, for example. Other clients may just be rude. Some — whether they're in court-mandated treatment or pushed into therapy by spouses or parents — just don't want to be in therapy. Challenging clients aren't just a problem for clinical and counseling psychologists, either. Forensic psychologists, such as those working as postdivorce parenting coordinators, can also face hostility.

Responding the wrong way — whether by pushing back at the client or withdrawing — can derail the client's progress, say Honda and others. But, they add, there are ways to use uncomfortable interactions to actually improve treatment.

How can psychologists respond effectively to challenging clients? Here's advice from practitioners who have eased stressful encounters with their clients:

(Video) 9 Tips on How to Deal with Difficult Patients

Calm yourself. When faced with a challenging client or situation, you don't want to escalate the situation by reacting to it in kind, says Honda. Instead of fighting back, be aware of your emotional and physical state, such as a racing heart, surging adrenaline, confusion and dread, he says. When the father and daughter started yelling at him, for example, Honda put his head in his hands and asked them to stop talking for a few minutes so he could calm down. Without that time out, he says, "I knew I wasn't going to be able to be constructive."

Mindfulness meditation can help psychologists prepare for the anxiety, frustration and anger that challenging clients provoke, says psychologist Mitch Abblett, PhD, executive director of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy in Boston. Through daily practice of mindfulness, clinicians can learn to notice sensations arising in the body and thoughts arising in the mind without judgment. They can also keep in mind the core values that undergird therapy. "If you connect with those values, it can pull you through some of these charged moments," says Abblett.

Express empathy. Don't argue or make excuses, says Honda. Instead, validate the client's feelings by saying, "You're angry with me because …." and asking "Am I hearing you right?" And even if it doesn't feel fair, says Honda, apologize, telling the client you're sorry that something you did has made them angry or that they feel you're not competent to provide the services they need. "That can not only help de-escalate the situation, but can also further the ultimate goal of providing therapy," he says.

(Video) SCENE 8 Working with a difficult client

But keep in mind that expressing empathy has to be done right or challenging clients may see it as phony, says Stanley L. Brodsky, PhD, a professor emeritus of psychology at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, who also has a private practice. "Difficult, suspicious clients may be put off by expressions of empathy," he says. "One has to earn the right to be empathic with such clients and to avoid clichéd expressions."

Compassion for the client should also be accompanied by consequences, adds Abblett. "This is not a rainbows-and-unicorns passive approach," he says. Acknowledge the emotion that is driving the client's behavior, then emphasize that it's not acceptable for him or her to make threats or swear, refuse to pay for services or simply not show up, he says.

Reframe resistance. "Some clients say they really want to change, then fight every inch of the way to make sure they don't," says Fred J. Hanna, PhD, who directs the counselor education and supervision program at Adler University in Chicago and is also a faculty associate at Johns Hopkins University. But don't resist resistance, says Hanna. "When the client is resisting the therapist and the therapist starts getting irritated with the client, then you have two people resisting each other," he says. "That's not therapy; that's called war." Instead, suggests Hanna, praise the client's resistance. "I say, 'If you worked as hard to make your life better as you do to make sure nothing changes, you could be extraordinarily successful,'" he says. If a client curses at him, Hanna expresses his admiration for the client standing up for him- or herself. Doing so, he says, helps clients see that their therapists understand them.

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At least rudeness gives you something to work with, adds Brodsky. Say a client attacks the way a psychologist looks. Don't react negatively, Brodsky says. Instead, encourage the client to say more about why you're so unattractive. "Once you do that, you're actually talking," says Brodsky. Plus, if clients are rude with therapists, they're often rude with others in their lives. "It lets you explore what they've done to put off other people," says Brodsky.

Cultivate patience. Psychologists should strive to be patient not only with challenging clients, but also with themselves, says Sarah A. Schnitker, PhD, an associate professor of psychology at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. Her research has uncovered two strategies that can help psychologists cultivate more patience. One is loving-kindness meditation, in which practitioners direct well wishes to themselves, friends and family, even their enemies. The other strategy is re-appraisal, or thinking about situations in new ways. If a client is frustrating you, remember the bigger picture — that therapy is helping to bear the burden of another person's pain, says Schnitker. "You might think, 'This is helping to test me as a clinician' or 'This is helping me develop patience, a virtue I can use in my own life.'"

Seek support from your peers. Psychologists can feel a lot of shame when they're having trouble with clients, says Honda. "A big reason for that is because people don't talk enough about their difficulties," he says. "They think they're the only ones." Sharing tales of challenging clients with other mental health professionals — while respecting confidentiality — can not only help end that isolation but also lead to constructive suggestions about how to deal with such challenges.

(Video) HOW TO DEAL WITH DIFFICULT PATIENTS 😤

It can also be helpful to get a second opinion by consulting on specific cases with colleagues who are "outside the fray," says Matthew J. Sullivan, PhD, a private practitioner in Palo Alto, California. "You can touch base with them when you're feeling rattled or insecure about something you've done," he says. Even a quick phone call with a colleague can help.

Consider terminating the relationship. Clients who think a psychologist is terrible at his or her job have every right to question credentials, challenge therapeutic decisions or even decide to end the relationship, says Honda. Sometimes, he says, "it just isn't a good match."

It's also OK for a psychologist to end the relationship, says Abblett. "I talk about how it seems like we're not on the same page about our expectations of the work and our mutual responsibilities," he says. Abblett outlines what he believes his own responsibilities are toward a client, then asks the client if he's meeting them. He then tells the client what he needs from him or her. "If that can't happen, we may need to talk about a referral to someone else," says Abblett.

(Video) 6 Ideas for Working with Resistance

FAQs

How do social workers deal with difficult clients? ›

9 Simple Strategies to Dealing with Difficult Clients: Social Work Edition
  1. Stay calm.
  2. Set boundaries.
  3. Respect the person.
  4. Read their body language.
  5. Fix the problem and leave immediately.
  6. Be empathetic.
  7. Build a rapport.
  8. Get other people's point of view on the situation.
Jan 5, 2021

How do you overcome client resistance? ›

  1. 5 Steps to Overcome Client Resistance.
  2. Step 1: Acknowledge. Everybody wants to feel listened to. ...
  3. Step 2: Validate. Nobody wants to be told that they don't have a right to their feelings, or to have their feelings dismissed. ...
  4. Step 3: Clarify. ...
  5. Step 4: Create Buy-in. ...
  6. Step 5: Make your case!

How do you build rapport with difficult clients? ›

Here are some approaches to transforming difficult client relationships. Talk about the relationship. Set aside time to ask your client what they need for the relationship to succeed and let them know how you work best. Set expectations for communication cadence.

How did you handle a difficult situation answers example? ›

HOW DID YOU HANDLE A DIFFICULT SITUATION ... - YouTube

How did you handle a difficult situation examples? ›

Examples include: Avoid speaking badly of current/former company, co-workers, supervisors, or direct reports. Try not to come across as “superior” in your past or current role. Conversely, don't play yourself down — unless it's explaining how you've grown.

How do you respond to a distressed client? ›

How to Deal with Angry Customers
  1. Remain calm.
  2. Practice active listening.
  3. Repeat back what your customers say.
  4. Thank them for bringing the issue to your attention.
  5. Explain the steps you'll take to solve the problem.
  6. Set a time to follow up with them, if needed.
  7. Be sincere.
  8. Highlight the case's priority.
Dec 15, 2021

How do case managers deal with difficult clients? ›

Let the client ask questions. Explain the result of every choice they consider. Having some ability to choose really empowers people. A good idea to keep in mind with all clients, but again, especially for those who are challenging you in some way.

What types of strategies do you use to engage clients social work? ›

The three most frequently identified strategies used by social workers in this study to encourage engagement with involuntary clients were relational strategies, motivational interviewing techniques, and a client-centered and client-controlled treatment.

How do therapists engage difficult clients? ›

Reflective listening can be done at all times during therapy sessions but can be especially useful when therapists feel stuck with unresponsive clients. Showing clients they are being listened to exhibits empathy, which builds rapport and trust – qualities clients want to feel when embracing change.

How do you reframe resistance in therapy? ›

Reframe resistance

If the client is resisting and the therapist gets irritated or annoyed, you have two people fighting one another, and the therapeutic relationship breaks down. Instead, encourage the client to explore and explain their feelings and show that you recognize and understand them.

How do you work with resistance? ›

1. Become aware.
  1. Become aware. The problem usually is that we don't think about Resistance. ...
  2. Combat this by realizing that you are facing Resistance. Once you become aware of it, you can fight it, and beat it. ...
  3. Be very clear, and focus. ...
  4. Clear away distractions. ...
  5. Have a set time and place. ...
  6. Know your motivation. ...
  7. Just start.

How do you set boundaries with difficult clients? ›

How to Set Boundaries with Clients
  1. Respect your own time. Starting late or staying late are options for extreme situations. ...
  2. Communicate effectively. ...
  3. Stay in control. ...
  4. Say no and mean it. ...
  5. Set client expectations early and consistently. ...
  6. Be done with guilt.

How do you handle a challenge best answer? ›

You also want to be able to define how you met the challenge successfully. If possible, mention a challenge most relevant to the role you're applying to. In your answer, you'll want to set up the challenge clearly and succinctly. Step 2: Don't just say what you did—explain how you did it.

Can you give me an example of a difficult problem you solved at work? ›

"DESCRIBE A TIME WHEN YOU SOLVED A DIFFICULT PROBLEM ...

How do you handle a difficult patient interview question? ›

DEALING WITH PATIENTS Interview Questions & Answers ... - YouTube

How do you answer Tell me about a time you worked with a difficult person? ›

How to answer "Tell me about a time you worked with difficult people"
  1. Consider an instance in which you experienced a specific challenge with a coworker. ...
  2. Speak objectively while explaining the premise of the situation. ...
  3. Reflect on the experience and take ownership of your own actions.

How do you respond to someone who is frustrated? ›

How to Respond to Anger and Frustration
  1. Diffuse patient emotion to the point where communication & problem-solving can continue.
  2. Gain clearer understanding & ultimately shared understanding of patient's emotion or experience.
  3. Make partnership statements & express willingness to help.
Jan 29, 2021

How do you respond to difficult clients as a caregiver? ›

Be Compassionate and Patient

Positive responses and empathy when a client is being difficult show and make them realize you care. Always apologize for any negative experiences and clarify the matter. Use positive language at all times and be patient as you work towards building a better relationship with your client.

How do you build rapport with clients in social work? ›

How To Build Rapport With Clients
  1. Use your active listening skills to understand the client and their story. ...
  2. Watch your speed. ...
  3. Small successes first. ...
  4. Treat the client with respect. ...
  5. Match styles. ...
  6. Be competent. ...
  7. Self disclosure.
Dec 6, 2012

How do social workers handle clients? ›

  1. • • • Social workers are often in the role of managing clients' feelings. ...
  2. STAY CALM – Remaining calm is key. to managing most situations, especially when a client is angry. ...
  3. LISTEN – Listening to the client can. ...
  4. REMIND THE CLIENT YOU ARE. ...
  5. EMPATHIZE – Often clients are in. ...
  6. ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN. ...
  7. TAKE PRECAUTIONS TO. ...
  8. Checklist.

What is one of the first questions social workers should ask a client? ›

What Is One of the First Questions Social Workers Should Ask a Client? One of the first social work questions to ask clients is, “How can I help you today?” At the end of a social work client interview, some of the questions social workers ask include: “Is there anything else you'd like to share?”

What are strategies for motivating change in clients? ›

#5 – Use Motivational Interviewing

Express empathy through reflective listening. Develop a discrepancy between clients' goals or values and their current behavior. Avoid argument and direct confrontation. Adjust to client resistance rather than opposing it directly.

What's an example of reframing? ›

One example of reframing is redefining a problem as a challenge. Such a redefinition activates a different way of being. Problem has a heavy quality to it, while the notion of a challenge is enlivening. Another example and an extremely important opportunity for reframing occurs during an angry interchange.

What are reframing techniques? ›

Reframing is a strategy that people can use, either on their own or in therapy, to help adjust their mindset. It often involves focusing on more positive thoughts, but it can also be centered on changing excessively high expectations to be more realistic.

How do you engage resistant clients? ›

Engaging Resistant Clients
  1. Make them as comfortable as possible. You can try to put them at ease by introducing yourself, being personable, reassuring them of confidentiality, and explaining, in an appealing way, how your role works. ...
  2. Acknowledge their perspective. ...
  3. Find out what they want. ...
  4. Use what they find motivating.
Jul 13, 2017

How do you overcome resistance when working through a difficult problem? ›

How to Overcome Resistance and Effectively Implement Change
  1. Overcome opposition. Regardless of how well companies manage a change, there is always going to be resistance. ...
  2. Effectively engage employees. Listen, listen, listen. ...
  3. Implement change in several stages. ...
  4. Communicate change effectively.
Jul 17, 2019

How do you resolve resistance to change? ›

7 Strategies for Overcoming Resistance to Change in an Organization
  1. Listen to Employee Concerns. ...
  2. Define and Communicate Reasons for Change. ...
  3. Build Excitement. ...
  4. Prioritize Employees. ...
  5. Delegate Change. ...
  6. Leverage Data. ...
  7. Implement Change in Phases. ...
  8. Overcoming the Inevitable.

How do you respond to resistance? ›

  1. Resistance: Resistance is normal. ...
  2. How do you respond to resistance: Reflective Listening – to be accurate you must really listen to both what the client says. ...
  3. Shifting Focus: ...
  4. Reframing: ...
  5. Agreeing with a twist: ...
  6. Emphasizing personal choice and control:

What are 5 ways in which you can maintain professional boundaries when working with clients? ›

  • Expectations. Set clear expectations with clients at the beginning. ...
  • Your role. Be clear about your role and its limits.
  • Assertiveness. Be assertive and let clients know if they are behaving inappropriately.
  • Clear relationship. ...
  • Personal information. ...
  • Unnecessary information. ...
  • Objectivity. ...
  • Triggers.

How do you get clients to respect your time? ›

Give what you want to receive.
  1. Have set business hours and let your clients know them. ...
  2. Respond promptly to phone-calls, texts, or emails. ...
  3. If you can't respond right away, be sure to set expectations and be upfront about when they can expect a reply. ...
  4. Don't be “commitment phobic”.
Dec 24, 2018

Why do boundaries need to be clear between you and the client? ›

The Need for Boundaries

There is a need for clear boundaries to protect the therapeutic process and to keep the relationship professional. Boundaries protect clients from getting taken advantage of due to vulnerability. Boundaries also protect therapists from being sued by patients.

How do counselors deal with difficult clients? ›

Here's advice from practitioners who have eased stressful encounters with their clients:
  1. Calm yourself. ...
  2. Express empathy. ...
  3. Reframe resistance. ...
  4. Cultivate patience. ...
  5. Seek support from your peers. ...
  6. Consider terminating the relationship.

How do you respond to difficult clients as a caregiver? ›

Be Compassionate and Patient

Positive responses and empathy when a client is being difficult show and make them realize you care. Always apologize for any negative experiences and clarify the matter. Use positive language at all times and be patient as you work towards building a better relationship with your client.

What makes a client challenging? ›

Difficult clients are part of the cost of doing business. Most often, they're difficult because they're unhappy with the service you've provided. Sometimes, they could simply have a personality that clashes with your company values, or they have expectations that are way out of whack with reality.

How do you handle clients in counseling? ›

These six tips will help you begin to understand the value of the client and counselor bond so that you can implement them in your own practices.
  1. Make Sure the Focus is on the Client. ...
  2. Walk the Line between Pushy and Coddling. ...
  3. Stay Confidential. ...
  4. Ask for Clarification. ...
  5. Practice Your Questions. ...
  6. Structure the Session.

How do you deal with a client who has unrealistic expectations? ›

7 Steps to Dealing with a Customer Who Has Unrealistic Expectations
  1. Step Into Their Shoes. ...
  2. Be All Ears. ...
  3. De-escalate if Necessary. ...
  4. Be Transparent. ...
  5. Take Ownership of the Issue. ...
  6. Iron Out Next Steps. ...
  7. Follow Through.
Sep 17, 2020

Most of the tips I’ve shared look at how to prevent clients from ever becoming a problem, but I also cover some tips to help resolve the problem as quickly as possible if things do go wrong.. If you have clients abroad, speaking frequently might not always possible, but even so, you should still make the effort -- especially if they are a long standing client.. There are always going to be ups and downs with clients, and in general clients, will react in two ways to bad news.. You may recognise the following scenario: you get to the end of the month, you’re happy with the work you’ve delivered, you send the monthly report, and the client is disappointed.. For example, I’ve been in the scenario in the past where a client sent me an angry email and questioned the results from that month; I pulled up analytics to show that things were actually going very well.. By writing at the start of the month what you plan to do and showing it to the client, you’re more likely to get that work completed if you know that you’re going to review it at the end of the month with the client.. If you don’t call and try to fix it before the client notices, you’ll end up with an angry client for two reasons: first, because of the drop, and second, they pay you to notice when things go wrong and they noticed (in their eyes) before you did.. If you made a mistake, or even if the results just aren’t as good as you were expecting, admit it, your client will appreciate that you’re in this thing together it adds to the genuine care in the business as well if you’re first to go to the client and say you’re disappointed with the results.

As much as you try to deliver flawless services and maintain great client relationships, you're bound to run into some difficult client situations – it's part of doing business!. Whether some aspect of your job management cycle doesn't go according to plan or your client is just having a bad day – it's important that you're prepared to manage angry, frustrated, or emotional clients.. Responding to your client emotionally or angrily is only going to escalate the situation.. But disregarding a client’s feelings will only inflame them more.. It’s crucial that you acknowledge their emotions - whether or not they’re justified - so your client feels like they’ve been truly heard.. If it gets to the point where you client loses control and is yelling insults or failing to manage their emotions...you need to have patience.. Try to let your client get their feelings off their chest without interrupting.. By really listening to your client’s problems you may discover ways to improve your service, business processes and communication going forward.. Have you ever experienced a bad gut feeling when meeting a new client?. Meeting with a client is like going on a date.

We've all had clients that were extremely difficult to deal with.. Understand The True Issue At Hand. First, aim to understand the true issue at hand.. Set Relationship Rules Upfront. Like my fitness coach says, "suck it up, buttercup.". Don't devalue yourself by working with "wrong fit" clients who suck your life force and soul.. One strategy that has allowed me to serve my clients to the fullest is setting clear expectations and partnership parameters.. Secondly, establish your "rules of engagement" – how you will work with each other in service to optimizing your purpose.. Difficult clients are still people and they have influence on others, as well.. Always approach first with unconditional positive regard and have an honest and nonjudgmental conversation and hold the space for the client.

Difficult clients take many different forms.. One or two difficult clients are common in business, but it’s important to try and turn things around before it’s too late.. Thank you for your email listing your concerns about this project.. Find out where things went wrong (if they did in fact go wrong), and how you might be able to improve processes or communication in the future.. Your reputation and integrity are more important than your bottom line.. Sometimes, you won’t be able to fix an issue, and you’ll have to terminate a difficult client.. There may be simple solutions – clarifying communications, changing workflow processes, re-wording contracts – that could prevent a repeat situation.. What’s the most difficult client you’ve had to deal with, and what did you learn from the experience?

How many times have you thought that your job would be much easier if you didn’t have to deal with difficult or emotional clients?. Even if you deliver a relatively safe service, such as helping with year-end accounts, there will be times when the emotions will make it difficult to deliver the service the client needs.. Perhaps this is why so many of us shy away from conversations with difficult or emotional clients?. When you are faced with a difficult or emotional client, or even an angry client, you need to remember that the only emotions you can actually control are yours.. Very often by not letting your speech show emotion, you will bring your client back down into a rational state.. Very often, once you have acknowledged the emotion you are hearing will your client start to become more rational and reasonable.. Dealing with difficult or emotional clients and tough client situations is part of being a professional advisor.

A client comes to you for help.. They know they need to make a change, but they need help.. Connecting with clients and coaching them to success depends on saying the right things, in the right ways, at the right times.. Most importantly, it means moving from “awfulness-based coaching” to “awesomeness-based coaching” .. Awesomeness-based coaching is an empathic coach working with their client, celebrating progress, and building on their client’s existing strengths to produce health and fitness success.. And you’ll coach them to better results.. In working with over 100,000 clients and students, we’ve learned that people tend to fall into one of three categories, each requiring a different coaching strategy.. But they all struggle at predictable times unless they’re coached in the way that works best for their type.. By looking deeper into the skills our clients are learning , and understanding the practices that will help them establish those skills, we can build a strong foundation.. They’ll take the opposite approach, and start arguing for why they can’t change .. Most clients feel ambivalence when it comes to changing.. For anyone but a physique competitor a few weeks out from a contest, the little details in a meal plan don’t really matter.. So, instead of hitting people with harsh rules, restrictions, and “follow-this-to-the-letter meal plans” — which usually lead to dietary rebellion and collapse — help clients make eating a low-stress, natural part of their lives.

Psychological research in the fields of sports, business, and beyond has identified approaches, skills, and tools that can help us cope, overcome, and even flourish.. Problem focused (proactively dealing with the source of the stress) versus emotion focused (reducing stress by regulating emotion) Approach (alleviating the problem directly) versus avoidance (distancing oneself from the stressor). Techniques and strategies have a focus (e.g., actions, social resources), a coping family that shares the same action tendency (e.g., problem solving, negotiation), and a way of coping (e.g., surrender, emotion regulation).. Focusing on positive mental images can favorably impact both our mind and body and increase self-belief in our ability to cope with change.. In My Hidden Chimp: Helping Children to Understand and Manage Their Emotions, Thinking, and Behaviour With Ten Helpful Habits , Peters and Battista (2018) use the same model to help children develop healthy habits for life.. Understanding when the chimp tries to take over Situation:Not eating healthilyYour ‘human’ thoughts:The chimp’s thoughts:I want to eat good food to make me strong and healthy.I don’t care; I like cake and candy.Situation:I don’t want to do homeworkYour ‘human’ thoughts:The chimp’s thoughts:I like school, and I am good at my lessons.I’m watching TV; I don’t want to read.. Identify words that describe you and your chimp Words to choose fromWords that describe you when the chimp doesn’t take overWords that describe the chimp (some will match words that describe you)Worried, playful, calm. sad, busy, confident,. funny, happy, grumpy,. mean, bossyHappy, confident, sensible, loving, helpful, funnyGrumpy, happy, naughty, sad, funny, mean, bossy Trying new things Sometimes we get scared to try new things.. On Mental Toughness by Harvard Business Review ( Amazon ) Mindset: Changing the Way You Think to Fulfill Your Potential by Carol Dweck ( Amazon ) Positivity: Groundbreaking Research to Release Your Inner Optimist and Thrive by Barbara Fredrickson ( Amazon ) Evolutionary Psychology: The New Science of the Mind by David Buss ( Amazon ) The Chimp Paradox: The Mind Management Program to Help You Achieve Success, Confidence, and Happiness by Dr. Steve Peters ( Amazon ) Self-Determination Theory: Basic psychological needs in motivation, development, and wellness by Richard Ryan and Edward Deci ( Amazon ) Developing Mental Toughness: Coaching Strategies to Improve Performance, Resilience, and Wellbeing by Doug Strycharczyk and Peter Clough ( Amazon )

Dealing with difficult clients is one unfortunate part of having a business.. Keep reading if you want to learn how to deal with a difficult client.. Choose your words carefully when handling difficult client conversations.. Learning to understand your client’s perspective will help you deal with difficult customers in the future.. Ask them point-blank: “If we solve your problem, does that fix this situation?” Specifics may be your friend when you’re dealing with difficult clients.. I use a whiteboard and jot down the client’s complaints, and as we move through them, if the client starts to rehash what we’ve already settled, I point to the whiteboard and remind them that we’ve solved that problem and we’re moving on.. This will help the process run smoothly and reduce your time dealing with difficult clients.. It’s best to set boundaries when dealing with difficult clients in your business.. Sometimes you’re just going to run into an oil-and-water scenario where you can’t find a way to work with a difficult client.. Sometimes continuing to work with difficult clients can cost you time and money.. You get to spend your time working with more productive clients, and one of your competitors may get your irrational client.. Dealing with difficult clients in your business can be a headache at times, but you can ease your frustration with the right tools.. If you’re thoughtful with your words, understand your client’s perspective, focus on specifics, and speak your client’s language, you may rarely have to cut a customer loose.

So, put your great communication skills to work, draw on your superpower of reading the situation, and use these eight psychological tips for managing difficult customers to save your customer from churning.. Sure, you're an expert in your product/service, and you might be an expert in customer service, but you're not an expert in this customer, their situation, or the conversation you're currently engaging in.. Once you've determined the root cause of the anger, repeat back to the customer what you're hearing to make sure you understand each other, and to let the customer know that their concerns have been heard and will be responded to.. Nobody likes being talked down to, and even if the customer comes in hot with anger or a raised voice, make sure you take the high road to diffuse tension and make the customer feel like they're being taken seriously.. Dealing with angry customers can be difficult but angry, demanding, or hard to please customers are beneficial to your company’s success by providing opportunities to improve your business.. Anger is a natural emotion, but by actively listening, being sincere, remaining calm, having follow-up times, and prioritizing a customer’s case, you will be able to handle angry or difficult customers in any situation.

Show your client a personalized approach and try to put yourself in your clients's shoes before you answer.. Research suggests that more than 55% of your clients will be willing to pay more for better client service.. Research suggests that more than 55% of your clients will be willing to pay more for better client service.. Nowadays, your client is twice as likely to post a negative review about your client relationship as opposed to a positive one, and they are four times more likely to switch to the competition if they are dissatisfied with the service.. Your client is twice as likely to post a negative review about your client relationship as opposed to a positive one.. Your client service personnel are always out there on the battlefield, handling debates with unhappy clients and trying to put out fires.. Share with them the company's values and guidelines so that they are never surprised by a question from a client; collect feedback from clients and try to improve your products and services as much as possible; show your staff what is doable and what is not doable when handling complaints; invest in brainstorming and training sessions so that they can provide top quality service.

Difficult situations often could have been avoided if only clear expectations were set up-front.. “When people talk, listen completely.. What expectations does the client have of what is included in the project?. … have that difficult conversation with the customer.. His customer tended to use less confrontational terms like “bring clarity” rather than “hash out.” I suggested that my client listen carefully in their next meeting and mirror the terms that his customer used.. This works even better if you can relate it back to the business goals of the client.. You’ve kept calm, you’ve explained everything clearly and you’ve adapted your communication style to meet with the client, yet you’re still having difficulties dealing with them.. Despite our best efforts, anyone who works with clients is going to end up dealing with difficult ones at some point.. A “difficult” client doesn’t have to remain that way; often a good, clear conversation is enough to get the relationship back on track.

16% of agency businesses face client retention problems due to proper conflict management strategies in place.. Agencies and their clients have to deal with disagreements during a relationship, especially in the beginning as the teams are learning about one another and the partnerships is unproven.. This is a red flag that signals agencies’ risk of losing talent to other agencies or to other industries thereby reducing their daily productivity and disconnect with their clients.. Handling conflict in the right way will allow you to get to the core issue more quickly and with a better end result, helping you to salvage the relationships that matter and end those before they ruin your reputation.. In the accommodating mode, you work to solve the resolution and are so focused on the other person’s needs or solving the problem that you end up working against your own objectives.. Knowing how to handle and resolve conflict will make your agency an ideal place to work with.. Having strategies to reduce conflict with your agency will produce greater satisfaction among clients and employees.. I’m not advocating that you avoid problems, but there are some issues not worth mentioning -- the emotional energy and professional time it would take to address and resolve it is disproportionate to its negative impact on your team.. It can be easy to be blinded by your personal opinions of the person on the other end of the disagreement, but when addressing an issue or dealing with frustrations and other emotions, focus on the issue.. If you’ve already identified an issue and are working to solve the conflict, be sure to allow the client to fully express her feelings and thoughts.. It won’t always solve the immediate issue, but it could spur the client to consider your point of view during conversations.. Only focusing on how a problem negatively impacted your team is the wrong way to approach resolving a conflict.. One way to create empathy in your team and the client’s is to prompt everyone to consider a hypothetical situation that allows people to disconnect emotionally from the situation and consider a different perspective.

When you work at an agency, you’re not just responsible for your business.. That also means that you’re not just working with your team — you’re working with theirs.. Even when you’re faced with a difficult customer, however, it’s good to remember that you’re both working towards the same goal: delivering a great outcome for your client’s business.. In a busy work environment, that involves careful planning and scheduling for each project.. But every now and then you meet a true expert: a client who really does know a lot more about their business or industry than you do.. You’ve been hired to do something that your agency is really good at, and you’ve been paired up with a client with specialist knowledge (i.e. something they’re really good at).. You don’t want to schedule meetings with them over and over again — interrupting their workday and yours — or constantly ping them with emails, but you do want their unique knowledge to be an integral part of the process for each project.. Use a collaborative content management tool or a notebook in Teamwork Projects to create a single source of truth, where you store all of the essential specialist knowledge you’ve learned.. To be successful as an agency, your clients need to be able to trust that they have a great team of people taking care of their organization’s needs.. That way, it’s not something your client has to think about.. Specific project feedback goes inside the project.. New ideas go in a specific “Idea” list.. How do you get the most from your clients?

There are different types of challenging clients that a counsellor will encounter over the course of their work.. Know it all’s – There is nothing these clients do not know or have not done.. It is important that a counsellor acknowledge each of these types of client challenges are of a behavioural nature and do not cover the unique problems associated with socio-economic or environmental issues (Norton et al, 1998).. When dealing with challenging clients we need to remember that each and every individual is entitled to a number of basic human rights.. If you are in a position of counselling clients that are considered to be ‘at risk’ in terms of their risk of becoming or being challenging, then it is important that you as a counsellor have adequate strategies and risk management procedures in place either in your practice or workplace, in the case of a challenging situation occurring.. If you are working on your own then it is best to only see the challenging client when another person can be in the office.. If the counsellor is on his/her own and a client becomes challenging, excuse themselves and leave the room.. To ensure complete and accurate records are kept with respect to a client complaint, it is the responsibility of the counsellor to:. Professional skills for counsellor: Counselling challenging clients .. Solutions for the treatment resistant client: Therapeutic techniques for engaging challenging clients .

This means that you set aside any feelings you might have that the situation isn't your fault, or that your client has made a mistake, or that they are giving you unfair criticism .. All that matters is that you realize that your customer or client is upset, and that it's up to you to solve the problem.. Adjust your mindset so that you're giving 100 percent of your focus to your client, and to the current situation.. The most important step in the whole of this process is listening actively to what your client or customer is saying – they want to be heard, and to air their grievances.. If you feel that you know what will make your client happy, tell them how you'd like to correct the situation.. If you're not sure you know what your client wants from you, or if they resist your proposed solution, then give them the power to resolve things.. Once the situation has been resolved, follow up with your client over the next few days to make sure that they're happy with the resolution.. If your client has sent you a difficult email or they're angry with you over the phone, then offer to meet with them in person if you can to address the problem.. If things escalate, you may need to be assertive and stand up for yourself, or even walk away from the situation to give the client time to cool down.. Make sure that you listen actively to their problems or complaints, and resist the urge to interrupt or solve the problem right away.. If you're not sure how to fix the situation, then ask your client what will make them happy.. Follow up with your customer to make sure they were happy with how the situation was resolved.

Data on the prevalence of stalking of clinicians by their clients is reported as ranging from 5.6 to 13% in one review (Gentile, Asamen, Harmell & Weathers, 2002), and as high as 53% in another (Purcell, Powell & Mullen, 2005).. In this scenario, the client uses email aliases and contacts either the psychologist, colleagues of the psychologist, or persons known to the psychologist in an attempt to have a personal relationship with the clinician, gather information about the clinician, and/or spread malicious gossip about the psychologist.. According to a case study analysis by Zona, Sharma and Lane (1993), forensic clients diagnosed with erotomania were almost twice as likely as those with obsessional disorders to engage in general stalking behavior.. Setting clear limits and boundaries regarding the times you are available should be done right from the beginning of therapy and client violations should be dealt with directly (Gutheil & Gabbard, 1993).. Some clients make initial contact with therapists via email.. Stalking of psychologists by clients or former clients is a clear risk for psychologists who provide direct client services.. The College of Psychologists of BC’s Code of Conduct contains a helpful provision to assist psychologists who find themselves harassed and/or stalked by a client, where treatment may be terminated without making a referral.. The stalking of psychologists by their clients.

Of course, people don’t always like being told what to do, especially when it affects their children.. If a client is consistently late, Monten calls the client and says something like, “Maybe you don’t understand how our staff is compensated, but they work on commission.. Jensen, whose policy is similar, always calls to reschedule an appointment no matter how many times a customer doesn’t show up.. The challenge, all of the owners agree, is to get the message across without alienating the offenders.. “We never apologize for our salon policies,” says Jensen.. “When we lose a difficult client, the loss is far outweighed by the comfort of 99 percent of our remaining customers,” says Hull.. “I’d rather lose one client,” she notes, “than look like a woman with no spine to my staff.”

This strategy is effective when dealing with my resident who’s engaging in self-destructive and harmful behaviour.. This strategy would then be ineffective as if I don’t understand what my resident is going through I won’t be certain as to what methods can be used to support and assist the resident.. However, if I did not use effective communication it could mean that my client is frustrated and irritated due to not understanding me well, this can lead to my resident becoming stressed trying to understand what I meant which can lead to them harming themselves as a way of coping with the tension and the confusion.. Appropriate body language is useful in encouraging my resident to stop engaging in self-destructive behaviour this is because my resident will see that I’m worried about her and do care for her.. As a way of dealing with my resident harming themselves I would use this strategy to encourage my resident to stop this challenging behaviour.. It is effective because my resident may no longer feel low about themselves or feel anything negative so they may then stop engaging in this behaviour.. However, this strategy may not be effective for many reasons.. This is effective as it can ensure that my resident does not engage in self-destructive behaviour.. However, this strategy may not be effective when dealing with my resident who is showing self-destructive behaviour.. However, this strategy may not be effective, this is because my resident may believe that I am trying to change them which could cause them to worry about the way they are leading to self-destructive behaviour as a way of coping with these negative feelings of my resident doubting themselves.. This strategy is effective when dealing with my resident engaging in self-destructive behaviour.. This can cause the resident to engage in challenging behaviour as of frustration due to not being able to take medication without help.. By remaining calm I can ensure that they feel protected and they understand that my job is to help and assist them and that I aim to make sure that they don’t feel the need to engage in self-destructive behaviour.

Types of difficult clients Setting expectations Solutions on how to engage challenging clients. Possible barriers to helping clients include their history, beliefs, behaviour and social relationships – including resistance to change or to engage in therapy.. When you find yourself counselling difficult clients, it is worth exploring the client’s history to give us clues about where we might encounter any resistance.. Clients who have had a difficult, neglectful or abusive past may find trusting others very difficult and have issues around attachment.. Some clients believe they can’t be helped, and so come in expecting to fail, especially if previous therapy has not worked for them, or other professionals have let them down in some way.. Sometimes barriers to counselling can come from the client, but sometimes they might be within ourselves as therapists.. If we have experienced something similar to what a client is describing, this is sometimes referred to as ‘ parallel process ’.. Good clinical supervision is invaluable in this respect.

Everything seemed perfect that the couple were devoted to each other and have a daughter C who was in her second year in a satisfactory university.. The daughter Z tried to took her out for an airing and ease her anxieties and inferiority about the disfigurement but failed.. If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help!. In that period of time, I tended to communicate with my mother more than with my father and owe this difference to gender similarity and the tragic suffering of my mother.. Usually, involuntary clients show some resistant thoughts and behaviors.. This part is a personal understanding towards client resistance.. Similar to those who have inadequate strength or ability, the majority of the insufficiently motivated clients are not willingly attended the intervention tasks.. Skills of Coping with Client Resistance. In general, social workers are required to listen carefully to clients, thus provide clients more opportunities to express their feelings and perceptions and make them feel respected and admitted.. In short, the third party is ones who push clients to seek help or forced them to ask for counseling.. An available method to ease clients anxiety about change is to make them feel more sense of control.. The less the clients can control the process and results of intervention, the more they will view social workers as the representatives of those who force them to participate in the intervention.

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