How to Calm Upset Customers

How do you calm upset customers? Do you know how to calm them quickly? It helps to know this: When your upset customer is having a melt-down, they aren’t really angry at you. They’re upset that their expectation wasn’t met. It isn’t personal. Though you can take personal responsibility to manage their expectations and restore good feelings.

How? Take a moment to imagine what the customer is experiencing. What’s it like to be them? You can listen and respond with care, whether you agree with them or not. Once a customer feels heard, they’ll be more open to hearing from you.

 The majority of upset customers simply want to feel like they matter.

When you show empathy as your upset customer vents, you’re better able to defuse those tense situations.

Here are 6 Tips to calm upset customers:

People are emotional

  • Instead of seeing that as a problem, consider it a good thing. Why? Because emotions are what create lasting customer loyalty.

Focus on your language

  • The right words can feel like an emotional massage. Use phrases like, “Thank you for telling me.” “I’m here to help.” “Here’s what I can do.”

Enjoy the turn-around

  • When a customer complains and you go above and beyond to set things right, those customers can become your most vocal advocates.


  • Give yourself time to calm down and think before you act. Pause and take a deep, slow breath during your conversation with an upset customer.


  • Every word you say is a choice. Every action you take is a choice. Choose to make the customer relationship your top priority.

Events + your Response = the Outcome

  • Watch my video to see how to take 100% responsibility for every relationship in your life by using a simple success formula.

Want another powerful way to keep yourself and your team customer-focused? Try this:

To improve the customer connection give yourself and your team copies of COLOR THEIR WORLD: The Art of Creating Strong Customer Loyalty. It’s an innovative customer service activity/coloring book filled with skill-building sentence stems for creating strong team relationships and even stronger customer loyalty.


Marilyn Suttle, CVP is a customer service conference speaker, bestselling author. She works with organizations to ensure a strong customer focus and engaged teams.



Leave a Comment