How to Deal With Upset Residents

shutterstock_208800748Dealing with people who are upset is difficult. It’s easy to let their anger overpower you, causing you to become defensive or just as angry. However, when your residents are complaining about something, it’s not a time to become defensive. You need to acknowledge their complaint and try to do your best to solve it. When in doubt, follow these three tips.

Give Them Time to Vent

Everyone needs time to vent sometimes. You’ve probably been irritated about something, complained to someone and felt better. Even though no one fixed the problem, you felt better getting it off your chest. Similarly, if you just let your residents vent about their problem, it can often go a long way. It may relieve some of their stress, and it shows that you care enough to let them speak. If you try to stifle them because they are upset, they’ll only get more upset at you because it shows you don’t care, and they feel unheard.

Listen While They Talk

When someone is upset and taking it out on you, it’s common to become defensive. As a result, you may stop listening to their complaint and start thinking about how you’re going to defend yourself. However, when you do this, you can’t possibly hear what they are trying to convey. You’ll probably end up assuming you know what they are saying or just fail to hear everything. This will only annoy them more and make it impossible to solve their problem.

Fully Respond to Their Complaint

Once they are done venting, you need to respond to their complaint. If you can solve the problem, that’s great. Explain what you’re going to do and how you’re going to do it, or tell them you’ll think about the matter and get back to them. Sometimes, however, you can’t solve the problem. Maybe they are upset about something a neighbor is doing, but no one is breaking any rules. In this case, you still need to address their complaint with respect. Even if you are unable to fix the problem, if you are polite and listen, they should feel better.

When listening to a resident’s complaint, don’t take it personally. As long as you keep a professional attitude, you’ll be more likely to let them talk and you’ll listen and respond to their complaint the best you can.


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