Sometimes You Should Say 'No' to Clients
Companies work hard to win customers so it seems counterproductive to even consider saying no to client requests, especially in a customer service function.
There are times when it makes sense however. Being a pushover can send an even more negative message to customers, who can interpret always saying ‘yes’ as a lack of professionalism and standards, as well as weakness of character.
Making promises the company can’t keep is a surefire way to destroy a brand’s reputation. If a client tries to manipulate their relationship by making an unreasonable request, the customer service representative should feel comfortable holding the line in the spirit of fairness to other clients, integrity and transparency.
It doesn’t have to be a hard ‘no’ either. A creative customer service department might be able to suggest alternative ways to achieve the client’s goals, demonstrating responsiveness and flexibility without sacrificing process. Perhaps it’s a payment plan instead of a discount. Of course there are clients from hell that won’t pay on time and are more trouble than they’re worth. Saying no to them is good for morale and the bottom line.