10 Tips for CSMs to Develop Active Listening Skills | ClientSuccess - Deepstash
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1. Ask open-ended questions

1. Ask open-ended questions

Whena customer asks for help it's always a good idea to ask open-ended questions because usually when the customer calls their first thought may be just the tip of the iceberg. 

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2. Probe for clarification

If there is any sort of misunderstanding or something you need clarifying, don't hesitate to ask your customer, but don't forget to listen intently to their tone. 

Another thing that you should remember when probing for clarification is that you should never interrupt the customer while they're talking.

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3. Summarize well

3. Summarize well

After any discussion that you have with a customer, it's up to you to send out a summary of notes. It's helpful to take down notes while the customer is listening so you can repeat what you've understood from what they've said.

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4. Listen for unvoiced emotion

This tip is all about what isn't said. 

If a customer is explaining a product issue in pretty mild detail but is getting audily workeup up over user feedback, this may indicate where the bigger issue lies. 

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5. Let them 'get it out of their system'

5. Let them 'get it out of their system'

While listening to a customer sharing their issues, sometimes it's an instant reaction to jump in and begin your defensive strategr. However, instead of doing so it would be better if you let them say their piece so that they can get what they're feeling out of their system.

Afterwards, you can start to calmly discuss a solution with them. 

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6. Get rid of distractions

One of the biggest threats to active listening is the many distractions that can be found in everyday life -- your phone, email, and corporate messaging platforms. 

You should give your customers your full attention. 

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7. Stand in their shoes

7. Stand in their shoes

This is a different way to say "try to empathize with the customer." As a CSM, you should be able to understand where the customer is coming from, or at least try to, especially when they are upset. 

Through empathizing, you can actually get to the root issue instead of the shallow level of questioning.

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8. Empathize verbally or visually

We've established that empathy is important to CSMs but it should be clear that you can be vocal with your support and empathy. Regardless of whether you're talking through video or an in-person meeting. 

Do everything in your power to make your customer feel seen and heard. 

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9. Wait to solve the problem or solution

9. Wait to solve the problem or solution

Before rushing in to solve your customer's problem, take a minute to comb through the possible solutions that you can offer them and then discuss this with the customer and your internal team.

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10. Ask how you can help before proposing

Talk to your customer about how they want to proceed with the issue or inquiry. Sometimes, what you or your team offer to the customer could be far off from what they're looking for and just frustrate them. 

Therefore, should there be a consensus on both ends with a compromise that everyone is good with, will show how much you value the customer and your team's opinion.

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CURATED BY

melissamartinez

Passenger transport manager

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