How to troubleshoot a client problem as a company leader

When problems arise in a client relationship, it may be necessary for a leader in the company to step in and manage the issue.

That way, the client knows the company takes the situation seriously and will do whatever it takes to find a solution.

Here’s a template to guide you.

Subject line: Update on Acme Office Chair 3000

Hi [client’s first name],

Good morning/good afternoon.

I’m [leader’s first and last name], a [job title; for instance, “vice president of customer relations] at [name of company or organization; for instance, “Acme Office Supply”].

NOTE: Job titles are lower case unless they precede the person’s name. That’s why the job title above is written as “vice president of customer relations” and not “Vice President of Customer Relations.”

I know you have been in contact with Heather and Brad on our team about the purchase of new office chairs. First, thank you for the business. We appreciate it.

Heather and Brad updated me on the issues with the chairs you received — the scratch marks on the arm rests and the stain on two of the seat cushions.

Of course, there is no cost to return the damaged chairs. I have expedited the shipment of new chairs and they should arrive on Tuesday, June 23.

I will check back with you on Tuesday to make sure everything is resolved.

Thanks again for your patience and understanding.

– Leader’s first name

Email signature

Deeper Insight

As a leader, you need to trust your instincts on when to supersede employees and take over. If you pull the move too much, it can undermine the relationship with the people below you.

But when done properly, the move can settle down disgruntled clients and make them feel like everything will work out. Nobody expects perfection, but we demand excellent customer service in good times and bad.

Yes, my book is full of templates, but I can’t tell you exactly when to deploy each one.

So often as a leader, you’ll have to know it when you see it.

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