Be Wary of “Yeah, but…”s in Call Scoring

One of the foundations of successful QA is objectivity. When a supervisor or QA scorer is analyzing a call, it’s imperative that she or he objectively measures what did or did not take place in that particular moment of truth with the customer. Too often, call scorers are given to relativity in their analysis rather than objectivity.

Through years of calibrating with different QA and supervisory teams, I’ve learned to be wary of two words…

"Yeah, but…"

These two words usually precede an excuse for behavior that damages objectivity. Here are the three most common "Yeah, but…"s I hear:

  • "Yeah, but…the CSR was really having a bad day." (the customer doesn’t care)
  • "Yeah, but…this was an improvement over what this CSR used to be like."(the customer doesn’t care)
  • "Yeah, but…this CSR is new." (the customer doesn’t care)

While each of the above statements may be true, it doesn’t change the fact that the customer received a negative service experience. The goal of QA should be to build consistency in service delivery no matter who is delivering that service – no matter what the circumstance. Once you start excusing behavior and giving CSRs a "pass" for a "yeah, but…." – you’ve crossed a line that brings the validity of every call evaluation into question.

Do you have any "yeah, but…"s you’ve heard in your own call center that you’d like to share? Click on the "comment" link at the bottom of this post and share it with us. (E-mail subscribers: Click on the title in this e-mail, which will take you to the web-page of this particular post. Once there, you can scroll down and leave a comment!)

  5 comments for “Be Wary of “Yeah, but…”s in Call Scoring

  1. June 26, 2007 at 11:58 am

    In the last center I managed we made QA analysts put a quarter in the jar if we heard a “Yeah But…” There were no “Yeah buts’” allowed. The only fair and consistent way to score was to ask ourselves to what level did “this” CSR on “this” call “this” time accomplish the skill. We were able to answer that question by reviewing our brief but clearly articulated definitions for each skill in our QA guidelines.

  2. June 26, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    Call Scoring & Yeah Buts

    Today Tom Vander Well wrote another great blog entry on call scoring and the curse of “Yeah, but…”

  3. June 26, 2007 at 4:55 pm

    That’s awesome, Connie. I’m going to share that one. Thanks for the great idea!!

  4. July 7, 2007 at 11:31 pm

    I am the only QA Coordinator in my call center. I don’t allow “Yeah, but…” Everyone is graded on the same curve. It doesn’t matter if you’re new, sick, preoccupied, whatever. I generally don’t know what’s going on in the CSR’s personal lives. This keeps me objective, fair and honest.
    I may have to place the quarter jar in my office for those calibration sessions, though.

  5. July 8, 2007 at 6:21 am

    Good for you! Don’t let the “yeah, buts” creep in (and keep that tip jar handy!!)

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