In our “What is a Conflict Transformer?” blog, we learned the advantages of embracing the mindset of viewing conflict as an opportunity for positive change. Mindset drives the choice of language which is the foundation for communication.

Conflict Transformers recognize that communication is an art and a key component in transforming the world around us. Language is powerful. Words can cut like a knife or put a smile on somebody’s face. How you use the tool of language defines who you are.

Why would a customer service team be interested in adopting the philosophy of conflict transformation and using transformative language?

By embracing the conflict transformation philosophy, a customer service representative provides a better experience for the customer, the company and themselves.

How can a customer service team use the skills, tools and mindset of a conflict transformer?

A customer service representative sets the tone for the conversation with their customer in the first 2 – 3 seconds of the call. From the first words spoken – which include the words, tone, and intention – they are setting up that call for success or not.

Who we are, when we speak with our customers, defines the path of our conversation.

It doesn’t matter what is going on with the customer before they engage. The only thing that matters is “who the customer service rep is” when speaking with that customer.

  • Are they a rep with intention to provide the best customer service available?
  • Are they a problem solver who is acting as an advocate?
  • Are they “phoning it in” as they speak to their customer because their thoughts are elsewhere?

 How much different will their conversation be depending on which mindset they bring to the conversation?

Exercise: Greet your customer with the phrase “Hi, I am <Your Name>. How may I help you?” as the following characters:

  • Debbie Downer who is pre-occupied about the fight with her husband last night
  • Negative Nancy who believes that every customer on the other end of the phone is ignorant and annoying
  • Angry Andy who hates the world and everybody in it
  • Frustrated Frieda who stubbed her toe, spilled her coffee and arrived 5 minutes late to work so you better not ask for anything extra today
  • Happy Hal who knows that with effort and a smile he can make a difference in the lives of each customers that calls him

As you can tell from the examples, it is much easier to get caught up in the emotional reaction of our lives than to choose a state of mind aligned with who you are. However, choosing who you want to be for your customers, before you engage with them, will produce high customer satisfaction ratings.

To become a master of any art, it requires discipline, practice and commitment. As Conflict Transformers, we enter a life long journey of mastering the art of communication.

Practice these tools:

  1. Embrace the mindset of viewing conflict as an opportunity for positive change.
  2. Choose who you want to be before you engage with the customer.
  3. Create a great experience for your customers, your company and yourself!

Tell us how it works for you.