Dealing With Customers Who Have Bad Credit

Sometimes as a sales person you have to deal with customers who turn from extremely friendly to extra rude in a matter of seconds. This can happen when you’re helping them with an application for a line of credit or in store card and then upon being told they’re ineligible because of their credit score, they snap. These can be extremely stressful moments as you feel the anger inside the customer begin to rage, wanting to lash out at you for having done nothing but try to help. How were you to know their finances were in a terrible state of affairs? You weren’t. So to help remind you to remain calm and unshaken by these unruly rude customers, I’ve put together a guide to try and help guide the troubled waters when these situations present themselves.

It’s Never Your Fault

If you were helping average Jill through the application process and she smiled and lied to you about her credit history, after you’d gone out of your way to politely try and warn her, numerous times, that the system would flag her for anything from late fees at a video store to the amount of applications for various credit cards she’s applied, then there was nothing more you could do. No matter how rude she gets, no matter how much she yells or scorns at you, you weren’t the deceitful one lying. Remember these angry customers are more ashamed of themselves for not listening to your warnings, lying to you and thus use anger to lash out as their coping mechanism. It’s never your fault.

Explain Upfront It Might Not Work

Through many years of customer service I found that when it came to someone‚Äôs personal finances, being as upfront and directly honest as I could, before even starting an application process, was usually the best way to avoid them flipping out when the system declined them for their bad credit. I was pretty adamant about asking them if they had arrears like unpaid balances, previously been bankrupt, overdue invoices and so forth. If customers got funny you could usually tell they had something they were worried about. When that happens just be brutally honest and tell them that as much as you’d like to help them out, the system flags a lot of things. I usually tell them I got my parents to apply while I was learning the system, and as they’d previously taken out a debt consolidation loan, the system flagged them. Doing this upfront should ease the amount they’ll flip out if they know you went through the declined process with your own parents.

Never Judge A Book

Certain customers have a defining look about them, a look that says I’m going to fail the application because I secretly have a bad line of credit. More often than not you are reading into genuine nerves because they’ve never done anything like this before and have a really good credit history. Whereas I found customers who appear to be more honest with you about their finances, are probably hiding something or know they’ll get declined and just want to rush through the application process, regardless of their outcome. Often I’ve been caught out, thinking someone would or would not get approved, before it flips and the entire opposite happens. This has happened so much that I’ve given up on judging people by their looks, language and behaviour.

People all handle finances differently, especially their own. So when it comes to customers with bad credit, remember we all deserve a second chance.

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