Are You Listening?

When customers phone us they often have an idea of what we are going to say, or more often an idea of what they want us say. Sometimes it can take several minutes before we can get through to the customer with the actual facts. Here are a few examples:

ME: Your policy was renewed at the end of November, but payment will be requested at the end of December because you pay a month in arrears.
CUSTOMER: Has payment been taken yet?
ME: No. Payment will be requested at the end of December.
CUSTOMER: Why hasn’t the payment cleared? It’s not on my bank statement.

CUSTOMER: I went to the bank to pay the renewal but they said they couldn’t do it. They told me to call you.
ME: We don’t have the facility to pay at the bank. You can renew over the phone by debit/credit card or direct debit. Or send a cheque/postal order in the post. Would you like me to renew it for you now?
CUSTOMER: Yes. I don’t have a credit card.
ME: I can do it on direct debit for you.
CUSTOMER: I want to pay cash at the bank.

ME: Next year your policy will be renewed automatically unless you tell me you don’t want that to happen.
CUSTOMER: Does that mean I get a free years cover?

ME: I need the policy holders permission before I can discuss the policy details with you.
CUSTOMER: Oh. But when is it due to be renewed?
ME: I need the policy holders permission before I can discuss the policy details with you.
CUSTOMER: Well it’s due for renewal on 5th of December, so can you renew it now and I’ll pay for it?

Listening is an art it seems.

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