High up on the list of difficult interview questions comes the next in my series on Simply Hired: “Tell me about a time you had to deal with a difficult customer.”
Before you backpedal into a trite version of “The customer is always right,” it’s worth taking a minute to understand what this question is really asking. Does the interviewer who asks this question want to hear that you’ve always had satisfied customers? Definitely not. Dissatisfied customers are a given in nearly every industry.
The interviewer is not looking to hire someone with a perfect track record. The interviewer is looking to hire someone who can confidently and professionally address customer concerns and come to an acceptable resolution with as little interference from management as appropriate.
That’s a tall order for a simple question, so it’s important to put time and thought into preparing your answer. Here’s how to take your experience and build the best response possible.