Mastering the Art of Customer Rapport: A Traffic Rule Approach

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I recently listened to a sample of recorded calls for a client. I do this a lot before delivering workshops for companies so I can see how employees handle customer calls. 


When I listened to these calls, I heard lots of interruptions. The employees should have let customers finish their sentences. What I heard was employees who sounded rude, rushed, and overbearing.


You need to yield in conversation for a friendly interaction with your customers. Yielding to customers is just like yielding in traffic. What I mean is, let the customer go first. Always give your customers the right-of-way in conversations. We'll do this using two easy steps.


First, always allow your customer to finish sentences

Even if you know exactly what the customer needs before they finish their sentence, still let them finish before you say anything. When you know within a second or two that the call needs to be transferred, you must let your customer finish what they're saying. When you do, you ensure you don't come off rude or in a hurry.


Second, If you accidentally interrupt a customer, apologize


You're bound to mess up now and then and interrupt a customer. I teach this stuff, and it still happens to me. It's okay. Just apologize. - "I'm sorry. You go ahead." The apology will make up for any misstep you might have made.

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Remember, over-talking and interrupting leaves customers feeling frustrated and disconnected. Instead, slow down and practice yielding to make customers feel heard, respected, and understood. 


Continue the Conversation with Me?

Does rapport really matter? from Building Rapport with Customers by Myra Golden

For more help connecting with customers and building rapport, check out my LinkedIn Learning course, "Building Rapport with Customers."

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