Chapter-a-Day Eccelsiastes 10

Stay calm. If a ruler loses his temper against you, don't panic; A calm disposition quiets intemperate rage. Ecclesiastes 10:4 (MSG)

Part of my occupation is coaching Customer Service Representatives (CSRs) in call centers. The number one question I get asked to address is, "How do you handle angry customers who are really angry and screaming at you?" The  "intemperate rage" of an angry customer who is taking out their frustration on the poor CSR who gets that call can be very unnerving.

One of the tactics I teach CSRs comes right from the Biblical principle that Solomon gives in today's verse. Once a CSR loses their temper with an angry customer, the result is almost always ugly. An angry response usually only serves to escalate the customer's anger and gives him a sense of self-justification for his out-of-bounds outburst. When a CSR refuses to reflect the customer's anger and, instead, remains calm and positive, the customer will often catch themselves and begin to calm down. (Another Biblical principle of returning a curse with a blessing is a good one to apply, as well!)

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickrand the Archigeek

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