At one time or another (if your job involves serving people), you have come across angry people, especially when talking with them over the phone. This can be a damaging scenario for anyone’s reputation, but even more so for a funeral home, where you are expected to display compassion for another’s misfortune. It’s also easy for a caller to become upset because their emotions are heightened due to the loss of a loved one. Here are three tips for answering funeral home calls when the person is upset.
Personalize the Call
When you are speaking on the phone with a family, you should always personalize the call. Use the person’s name when possible, so you can forge a connection. This can go a long way with someone that is upset and it will help you think of them as a real person with real reasons for being upset rather than an irate, nameless caller. It also produces a more sincere interaction and helps put a person at ease. More than that, the fact that you remembered the person’s name will show that you are listening to them.
Sometimes people just need to vent. When answering funeral home calls, this is even truer because the person that has lost a loved one is going through a tough time emotionally. If a person is on a tirade, don’t interrupt them and don’t take it personally. They aren’t upset with you, just a situation that has caused them to become angry. Typically the more they speak, the more time they’ll have to calm down as they get all of their grievances out. You should be actively listening to catch any key comments they make that can help you calm them down and present them with a solution. You can chime in with little comments so they feel like they are being heard.
Answering funeral home calls, you come across people grieving and stressed. Sympathy should be a given, but showing someone kindness when they’re upset and giving you a verbal thrashing will make them consider their actions. Smiling when you talk is a good way to keep a positive attitude when dealing with an upset person.
Although it may be impossible to avoid ever having a person upset when answering funeral home calls, using these tips can help diffuse a tense situation and you can ease the caller’s anger.