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When have you had to deal with an irate customer? How did you handle it?

Answer examples and advice for how to answer this interview question for an Under Armour interview

Picture a customer storming into a retail store with a bag full of merchandise, slamming it onto the counter and glaring you right in the face. "I want my money back!" They are furious and about to make a scene. How would you respond? When faced with the angry eyes of an irate customer, you need to have a plan of action. Here's how we recommend you respond:

"I would immediately ask questions to find out what was wrong. Once we identify the problem, if the customer was still upset, I would listen and make sure they felt like I understood through my body language and saying things like 'That sounds so frustrating, I'm so sorry you experienced that!' Once the customer is calm I will offer what I can do and make sure we are in agreement. I want the customer to walk away happy with the resolution."

It can be difficult to know how to respond when you are caught off guard with a dissatisfied customer. Following steps like the ones above will help you deal with even the most challenging situations. Stay calm and carry on!
Basic answer example
"I want my money back!"

View user-submitted Answers

When have you had to deal with an irate customer? How did you handle it?
First, I try to take a deep breathe and understand why the customer is upset. At that point I express and understanding so that they do not necessarily think I am not on their side. Next, I try to find a solution, something that is fair and makes the customer happy.
Working in retail I have had to deal with customers who are unhappy with the product /unavailability. I analyzed the situation. Agreed with the customer, the customer is always right in retail. Reassure the customer that it is not their fault. Provided solutions to the customer in terms of discount options or exchanging the merchandise. Followed the customers wishes and completed the transaction. After the situation was handled I would discuss the encounter and provide feedback to the manager so that the issues with the product would be communicated up to the corporate level.
No but if I had I would help them solve the issue on why they are not pleased.
I once had a customer who wanted his debit card limit raised because he was on a cruise and wanted to be able to get cash for the casino. I told him I would need upper management to approve the increase before I did so. He became irritable and demanded he speak with a manager. I asked the customer if I can put him on hold so I can speak with a manager who is familiar with him. He agreed and I spoke with the manager about the situation. She spoke with the customer and gave her one time permission for the increase which pleased the customer. He thanked both of us and sounded better than he first did when he spoke with me.
I politely asserted my self to solve the issue without disrespecting the person.
A customer was not satisfied with the heating locations of our product. I sat them down and went over specs and asked for their input on suggested locations.
I have had to deal with an angry candidate that was upset due to not getting the position. I explained to the candidate that we filled the position with someone who had more experience relating to the position and we would keep their resume on file in case another position that they were qualified for opened up.
I personally have never had an irate customer because I do try my hardest to make sure all customers have the best shopping experience when I am working. However, while working somewhere else, I have seen a couple of customers get into an altercation over an item during a Black Friday sale. In an instance like that, the manager then called for security and the shoppers were escorted out.

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