How to Handle Stress in Customer Service

In Brief...

People respond to stress in different ways. While some people have a higher threshold for stress than others, all people deal with stress. Keep in mind the following guidelines for handling stress when working with customers.


  1. Ask yourself what it is that you can control or change about the situation. If the situation is one you have no power to change, there is no point in continuing to work on it. Both you and the customer will become even more frustrated. When this happens, it is time to involve someone who does have the power to control or change the situation.
  2. Ask yourself what it is you want to achieve by continuing. Once you have determined your goals or desired outcomes, you will have something to focus on, which will decrease the level of stress.
  3. Discover what actions must be taken to achieve the desired outcomes. If you focus on specific actions that will help you achieve the desired outcome, you will spend less time focusing on the behavior that caused the stressful reaction.

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Author: Janie Sullivan

Janie Sullivan, MBA, MAEd, has been teaching adult learners for over 20 years. She has taught online over 15 years, specializing in writing, communications, and small business applications. Janie directs the Center for Writing Excellence where she offers writing, editing, and formatting services for writers. She has been published in several newspapers and magazines as well as multiple online sites. She teaches communication, business strategy, leadership, and management courses. Janie has published a book "Develop and Deliver an Online Class." This is the third book she has written about writing and teaching online. She also has published a novel and an anthology of short stories.