Agressive behaviour is common in many settings, whether it is clients or customers, yet the principles for managing these behaviours are common across many contexts.
The DR LASSO technique developed during my time working with complex clients, involves seven core stages, described in greater detail on the download at the bottom of this page.
Danger: Check for any danger to yourself or others such as potential weapsons. Also check for client/customer intoxication or psychosis as this greatly increases risk.
Relocate: People in high arousal are primed for action. Moving them to another room or space helps them to feel as though they have 'taken action'.
Listen: The client's communication will be primarily non-verbal, so it's not what you say, rather it's how you are that counts. Make sure you fully understand why they are angry before moving on. Non-verbal messages are more important than verbal ones. Communicate genuine curiosity.
Ask: Asking targetted questionsthat are of interest to the client helps you to take control of the interractions - they begin to respond to you rather than you responding to them.
Summarise: They are unlikely to de-escalate and consider your proposal until they are sure that you understand their situation.
Start with "Can": Describe your role and advise them what you CAN do for them first, before advising them what you can't.
Offer Options: Even if there is only one path of action available to them, try to frame it in terms of two or three options to give them a sense of self-determination.
You can download a free chapter on this topic HERE.