When you care about what we do, are passionate about our service to our clients, and deeply involved in their situation, it’s hard not to take things too personally. Particularly if your business involves helping people through difficult or emotional situations – the purchase or sale of a home, for example – it’s not uncommon for your clients to become angry, frustrated, stressed, unreasonable, and, even, blaming.
It’s a hard place to be. You have worked hard for the client, gone above and beyond in providing service, answered late night calls, met with them at inconvenient times. And then when things become challenging, you become the scapegoat. Everything you have done for them is forgotten and they only remember what you haven’t done.
When this happens, it’s easy to become defensive and angry yourself. But, remember this, whatever the emotion your client is displaying, it isn’t about you. Take a deep breath and take a step back. What is going on right now for this client? What is happening in their life/situation to cause this emotional response? How much control do you have over what is happening? What is your responsibility in this situation?
Acknowledging how the client is feeling can go a long way in helping you distance yourself from their emotion. When you are defensive, you imply responsibility. But, by simply using a few acknowledging statements, you can create a bond – instead of a rift – between you and your client.
- No wonder you are angry, this process has been long and difficult for you.
- It’s understandable that you feel frustrated; you are not seeing the results you had hoped for yet.
- Of course you don’t want to negotiate anymore; this person has not compromised on any of your requests.
And, sometimes, in the midst of the emotional outburst from a client, simply reminding yourself in your head, “It’s not about me” can help you gain perspective.