Continuing the series on estate security in executive protection...
"When two tigers fight, one dies and the other is injured." - Chinese Proverb
But how does that statement relate to estate security?
Customer service, that's how.
Don't take my word for it, that practicing customer service is an important aspect of executive protection. As reported by themselves, two of the most notable executive protection companies in Los Angeles have incorporated customer service type training into their training programs.
Because estate security is multifaceted, executive protection professionals will have ample opportunities to make mistakes. It is inevitable that you will have to navigate communicating with an angry vendor, principal, or other types of employees—even if you never make a mistake, you're still going to interact with someone who's dissatisfied with you.
Most importantly, we're concerned with how to handle a principal when they're dissatisfied, angry, etc. We can probably care less about a vendor that gets mad.
There’s a simple approach to follow for successful interactions with any angry customer, client, etc. Companies that uphold the highest standards of customer service teach their team members a variation of this formula:
(1) Listen - Shut up and listen to the principal.
(2) Empathize - Demonstrate that you can identify with their concern.
(3) Apologize - Whether you were in the “right” or not. Say that you’re sorry.
(4) Solve - Find a solution for the problem, and if there’s no perfect solution, then offer an alternative.
(5) Thank - Let the principal know that you appreciate them coming to you with their concern.
This formula doesn’t need to be adhered to in a rigid manner, nor should you treat every interaction the same. You may need to be a jerk to vendors on occasion, and you may need to be extra sincere when communicating with principals. But the fundamental ideas remain the same.
To paraphrase Dale Carnegie, “no one wins an argument.” And that’s twice as true if you talking to the principal.
Thanks for reading!
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