In any service business, no matter how good your team is, problems will occur. When they do, Inghilleri and Solomon recommend 4 steps for recovery:

1. Apologize and ask for forgiveness

Make your regret personal, believable and sincere. Acknowledge the customer’s grievance. Be careful with your phrasing.

2. Review the complaint with the customer

To find out exactly what happened, ask some pertinent, basic questions.

3. Fix the problem and then follow up

Use the opportunity to establish a tighter bond by offering the client something additional, for example, a free upgrade.

4. Document the problem

This is the way to learn from any mistakes and to track the causes of a problem.