The Impact of Customer-Directed Resources on Service Employee’s Customer Service Self Efficacy: An Exploratory Study
While considerable research has been devoted to identifying what organizational resources can enhance employee self efficacy, this has invariably examined how employee-directed resources, such as training, rewards and supervisory support are related to increased performance and employee self efficacy. No research to our knowledge, has examined how organizational efforts directed at customers can enhance employee self-efficacy. This is most salient to front line service employees. Our research therefore seeks to identify a range of organizational human resource practices directed towards customers, and their role in the customer-employee interaction that may enhance the service role of employees who are in direct contact with customers. We call these front line service employees. This research aims to address this gap. Four focus groups were conducted with service employees from a wide spectrum of the service sector in Singapore, who had boundary-spanning roles and spend time directly interacting with customers. Based on content analysis, three core themes relating to organizational efforts directed at customers were identified: customer education, customer organizational socialization and encouraging customer feedback on the service.
Four focus groups, were conducted with service employees who had boundary-spanning roles and spent time directly interacting with customers for transactions as well as responding to their requests and problems. Groups ranged in size from five to seven and were conducted during weekend mornings and lasted for an hour and a half on average. The participants represented a wide spectrum of the service sector in Singapore, for example airlines, banking, community service, education, electronics, government, healthcare, hospitality, information technology and retail. Prior to the start of the focus group, the moderator explained the procedures and the purpose of the session. A semi-structured approach was used, in which the moderator followed a topic guide that allowed an exploration of specific issues at the moderator’s discretion as they arose. Questions addressed the employee’s perception of the customer’s role in delivering quality service and how they felt that the organization can support the customer’s role. Projective techniques such as sentence completion were used to fully explore the range of possible responses.
Three core themes representing organizational efforts directed at supporting customers’ roles in service delivery were identified, including customer education, customer organizational socialization and encouraging constructive customer feedback on the service. These three resource themes were found to impact service employees’ customer service self-efficacy.
The study has several practical implications for managers, suggesting they need to educate and socialise their customers in line with the organization’s norms and culture, and find ways to encourage constructive customer feedback. Through such organizational efforts, customers are likely to be effective and efficient ‘partial employees’ impacting positively on service employees’ CSSE.
The Effect of Customer Perceived Justice on Customer Rage in Taiwan. From the Perspective of Cognitive Appraisal Theory.
The services industries have experienced rapid growth all around the globe. A US National Customer Rage Study in 2017 found out that 56% of customers encountered service rage. The challenge nowadays is how to deal with a service failure effectively; this includes dealing with customer’s negative emotions, rage, and complaints. However, the factors causing in the different degree of customer rage are less studied. Based on the cognitive appraisal theory, three types of perceived justice are identified, namely, procedural justice, interactive justice and distributed justice. Moreover, three types of customer rage involving in different degree of harmful behavior are discussed, called (1) rage emotion, (2) exit and (3) revenge. Three major research hypotheses are proposed to examine the relationships between types of perceived justice and types of customer rage. Via a questionnaire survey, a dataset of 205 valid Taiwanese respondents were collected. The regression results revealed that three types of perceived justice are all negatively correlated to different types of customer rage. The paper concludes that providing sufficient customer perceived justice prevent customers from raging. Thus, Some managerial implications for reducing customer rage are suggested.
Understanding the Roles of Different Categories of Front Office Staff in Complaints Management: a Role Theory Perspective
Because of the multiplication of contact channels established by firms to enable customers to voice dissatisfaction in the case of service failure, customers can address complaints to a wide range of front-office employees operating either in retail branches or at headquarters. Their differing task responsibilities and goals means these employees are likely to entertain different conceptions of how to handle and settle the complaint. This raises two key interlinked questions. First, what roles do the diverse categories of front office staff play in the service recovery process? Second, and more substantially, what coordination problems can arise as a result, thereby impeding a speedy and satisfactory resolution of the complaint?
In this paper, we explore the division of labour between specific categories of front office staff that lies at the heart of complaint management. Adopting a role theory perspective to examine the scope of their activities and the nature of the interactions between these different groups of employees, we shall show that this underlying division of labour has profound implications for customer satisfaction. The paper is based on 30 semi-structured interviews with two specific groups of contact staff employed in a large French high street bank: sales staff in the various retail branches, or non-specialists, and staff from dedicated complaints department, or specialists.
We argue that while the existing scholarship has emphasized the central role played by contact staff in handling client complaints, it has tended to treat these employees as an undifferentiated category, ignoring the occupational and skill distinctions, degree of expertise and legitimacy, and differential access to resources that characterise them. Consequently, it becomes essential to examine the precise nature of their activities and understand how these are articulated. Our findings highlight eight types of role configurations for dealing with complaints (responsibilization, retention, consulting, transfer, delegation, disengagement, legitimation, and consultation), but also several ‘blockage points’ which stem both from variations in the nature of responsibilities assigned to non-specialist and specialist contact staff, and the dynamics of their interactions.
Role theory can usefully illuminate the work of customer contact employees. In effect, our paper sheds light on the varied role demands experienced by specific groups of front office staff, making it possible to evaluate their effectiveness in dealing with customer complaints. It underlines the a gap that can exist between role expectations and role behaviour thereby causing severe disruption to the complaint management process. Second, by examining the work of different categories of front office staff, our research seeks to extend the debate beyond the traditional opposition between front and back office. Scholarship focussing on internal organizational operations have tended to concentrate on the interdependencies linking the front and back offices, but attention to vertical linkages has resulted in neglecting lateral relations.
How to Achieve Service Excellence by Servitization in Manufacturing
Servitization in manufacturing has been actively discussed. However, a systematic understanding of servitization that would help relevant manufacturers has yet to be established. In the meantime, the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) has been working to standardize service excellence for organizations to delight customers with unexpected and outstanding customer experiences, which are essential for a competitive advantage and business success (CEN/TS [Technical Specification] 16880:2015). This research proposes a theoretical typology of customer relationships to define servitization and connect it to service excellence for manufacturers to enhance servitization.
Service Logic proposes that servitization is a transition from a transaction-based model to a relationship-based model (Grönroos 2015). Drawing on previous studies, this research proposes two axes to classify the customer relationship. One is the view from either companies or customers. The other is during one of the steps of ‘design’, ‘producing-exchanging’, or ‘usage by customers’ where companies and customers engage in value formation or creation. Customer relationships can be divided into nine elements: ‘products without services’, ‘after sales’, ‘rights to use’, ‘pay per use’, ‘tailored’, ‘operations’, ‘co-creation during exchange’, ‘co-creation during R&D’, and ‘co-creating value in use’. These nine elements describe the customer relationship, which is altered during the servitization process, to elucidate the transition from a transaction-based model to a relationship-based model. Thus, servitization is defined as a transition from ‘product without services’ to ‘tailored’, customer relationships where companies engage in ‘usage by customers’, or co-creation with customers. The higher the co-creation, the greater the servitization.
Service excellence in TS 16880 consists of Individual service (Level 3) and Surprising service (Level 4), which are closely related to Desired Service (Zeithaml et al. 1993) and Customer Delight (Alexander 2010), respectively. These are built on Core value proposition (Level 1) and Complaint management (Level 2), which are closely related to Objective Quality and Perceived Quality (Zeithaml 1988), respectively. Level 2 is related to Customer Satisfaction/Dissatisfaction (Oliver 1993). But Level 1 and 2 are not emphasized in TS16880. Service excellence will result in delighted customers, leading to customer loyalty and distinguished business success (Gummesson 1991; Heskett et al. 2003).
Of the nine customer relationship elements, ‘product without services’, ‘rights to use’, or ‘pay per use’ represent Level 1, while ‘after sales’ and ‘co-creation during exchange’ represent Level 2. Customers perceive ‘tailored’, ‘operations’, or ‘after sales’ as tailor-made services, and the interaction with customers as ‘co-creation during exchange’, ‘co-creation during R&D’, or ‘co-creating value in use’ enables the delivery of service excellence at Levels 3 and 4.
Manufacturers aiming for servitization should establish more customer relationships to achieve service excellence. Service marketing studies could help facilitate this as providing only Levels 1 and 2 is no longer competitive.
When Time Flies – The Role of Passive and Active Innovation Resistance for Discontinuous Usage of Service and Product Innovations
For service innovations, continuous usage after initial adoption is of utmost importance as the business model of most services relies on a constant stream of profits generated by a continuous usage of the respective service. Yet, retention rates of service innovations are strikingly low. In the area of digital services for instance, retention rates for newly introduced mobile applications range around 25 % after initial usage, even further declining to 10% after 10 days of usage. Getting users across the line from initial usage of a service innovation to becoming a regular purchaser by achieving continuous usage represents the necessary condition for market success of most service innovations. Hence, knowledge about why customers do or do not progress from one stage in the adoption process to another, such as from first confrontation with the innovation, to initial usage and continuous usage seems of utmost importance for reducing the probability of discontinuous usage and thus for ensuring market success. Yet, previous studies on consumers’ adoption behavior were mostly cross-sectional in nature, examining passive and active innovation resistance as main inhibitors for favorable new product evaluation or initial adoption, rather than explaining their role in the progress leading to discontinuous adoption. Thus, it still lacks longitudinal studies that provide empirical evidence and insights into the importance of both resistance types for the course of the adoption process over time.
In order to address the above-mentioned research gaps, conducted two longitudinal studies with 3 waves (t0= before adoption, t1= 4 weeks after adoption and t2= 8 weeks after adoption). The first longitudinal study (n=352) examines the relative importance of passive and active innovation resistance in determining the course of the adoption process from developing an adoption intention, over initial usage to continuous usage of service innovations. The second longitudinal study (n=153) replicates the findings of Study 1 for product innovations and illustrates the differences in the course of the adoption process for product compared to service innovations.
Our findings point out, that active innovation resistance has a negative but limited negative effect in early stages of the adoption process which gets stronger in later stages. Passive innovation resistance, on the other hand, exerted a strong and negative effect in early stages of the adoption process that even turns positive in later stages of the adoption process. Hence, while active innovation resistance is always detrimental for the course of the adoption process, passive innovation resistance can also be beneficial for continuous usage in case it is overcome in early stages. Accordingly, companies might focus on convincing passive innovation resistors in early stages as these consumers might even turn into loyal consumers over time once they got convinced to initially adopt a new product.
The Relationship Between Customer Engagement Behavior and Firm Promotional Activities in a Loyalty Program
Commercialized in 1995, the Internet has undergone the influences of a myriad of technologies such as electronic mailers, the interactive web, and mobile apps in merely two decades. Recognizing the impact brought forth by technologies on loyalty program (LP) management, we address the following managerially driven questions. When customers redeem rewards, do they accrue more points and engage more with the LP digitally? How does their behavior differ by reward type? How do customers respond to outbound promotional mailings, i.e., email offers and paper direct- mails (DMs), and is there a relationship between outbound marketing efforts and customers’ digital interactions? In today’s digital world, we seek to understand whether firm-initiated activities can influence customers’ engagement, or vice versa, i.e., whether customer engagement can influence a firm’s promotions’ effectiveness.
The data for our research inquiry comes from a large dataset of LP customers and their point accruals, reward redemptions, and digital interactions and receipts of emails and DMs. We find that customers accrue more points during and after both cash and non-cash reward redemptions. However, with cash redemptions, accruals are the highest during the week of redemption, and they drop off in subsequent weeks. With non-cash redemptions, the decrease in point accruals between the week of redemption and its subsequent weeks is more gradual.
Customers choose the platform with which to interact strategically – when they want to redeem cash, they are more likely to engage using mobile apps, and when they want to redeem non-cash, they interact with LP’s PC website. Depending on customers’ preexisting digital platform preference and habits, outbound mailings have different effects on their subsequent digital interactions and point accruals. Sending offers has a positive correlation with inbound digital interactions, and the effect is greater for customers who use the offers. For emails, customers who respond by using the offers show greater subsequent PC web engagements and accrual increase than those who do not. Customers who use the LP’s app interact more than non-adopters upon receiving email offers.
To the best of our knowledge, this is one of the first papers that examine an LP and its different kinds of reward offerings, inbound digital interactions, and outbound promotional mailings. We recommend that as reward redemptions have a positive effect on customers’ point accruals and therefore spending levels and revenues, an LP should evaluate whether its services and offerings provide fit to its customers. Since customers use digital channels when they redeem different types of rewards, an LP can promote redemptions or interactions depending on its customers’ digital channel and reward preferences, or send mailers when it predicts members are about to redeem rewards.
The Adoption of Technological Innovations in a B2B Context and Its Impact on Firm Performance: Perspective of Ethical Leadership in Services.
The introduction of the digital “sharing economy” and “collaborative consumption” in the market place has opened much discussion on the various business models that challenges traditional thinking in service marketing. Technological innovation in the digital space has brought about theoretical changes in the way service marketing is applied, more so in the B2B environment where communication is essential in the alignment of the various stakeholders. Yet, not all new technological innovations lead to success and it is critical to establish which innovative technological activities improve competitiveness and growth (Agnihotri et al. 2016, Lacka and Chong 2016, Itani et al. 2017, Nunan et al. 2018). However, as digital technologies increasingly improves information flow, so is rampant use of misinformation to gain strategic advantage in an increasing crowded and competitive market. Edson et al (2017) suggests that popular social media websites and mobile applications have morphed into perfect platforms to “produce, consume and exchange different types of information” aimed at marketing to a very wide and discerning audience. It has been argued that such misinformation (fake news) impedes on the firms’ ability to connect with its consumers as “facts and fiction” can often be tied to one another. It can be argued then that the information economy has also given rise to the misinformation age and if not addressed, is expected to escalate exponentially.
Discussions on ethical leadership in the digital economy has provided some insights into answering this challenge. Its multi-attributes coupled with its complex relationship management are important in order to “predict outcomes” (Brown et. al 2005). But more importantly, this implies that value co-creation in the digital and knowledge economy is essential as the rules of engagement with consumers (and customers) have changed dramatically. Leaders are now frequently and repeatedly asked about their roles in managing ethical issues as greed, dishonesty and unscrupulous behaviour. Furthermore, the notion of increased complexity in society where markets are connected (physically) yet disconnected (proximity) have lead marketing practices astray. Strategies such as “paid social” and “pay per click” (Hanna et al, 2011) have encouraged a multitude of the consumer’s privacy invasion on the B2C platform. However, little research has explored the role of ethical leadership in managing digital technologies within the B2B platform in services.
Our paper proposes the relevance of ethical leadership and its role in the application of technological innovation. We argue for a conceptualisation of a framework on ethical leadership framework and its impact on performance in a B2B services by developing several hypotheses. Using secondary data from 1,000 IT service companies, we empirically demonstrate that ethical leadership plays a critical role as it enables service innovation through technology, and this has an impact on the firms’ performance.
Creating Consumers’ Sustainable Relationships with New Mobile Banks
According to transaction cost analysis (TCA), specific assets must be invested while consumers are interactive; they can be invested when consumers interact with physical technology or personnel; and because invested intangible or tangible assets are not easy to imitate, consumers rely on service providers. Customers can perceive the value and benefits of specific assets only when they have invested considerable time and money with the service provider and will stand to lose these competitive benefits if they switch to other service providers. Knowing this, consumers will choose to maintain their relationship with the bank to continue receiving the benefits. The literature on relationship marketing has emphasised that researchers should focus not only on consumers’ intent to use interactive technology in the future but also on their willingness to enter into a relationship and use interactive technology. Based on previous relationship marketing literature, relational behaviour, relationship investment and repatronage intentions are three gradations in sustainable relationship behaviour (which is believed to predict continue using interactive technology). Yet, empirical research on consumers’ sustainable relationship behaviour is limited. Therefore, this study explores whether specific assets influence consumers’ willingness to build a sustainable relationship with a new mobile banking service and to engage in sustainable relationship behaviour.
However, there must be a filtrated system before customer made a decision of invested specific assets; only in satisfaction, consumers will want to invest specific assets. Creating and offering unique value and special benefits are key factors in attracting consumers’ using new banking service. Berry et al. (2006) also argued that engaging in service innovativeness is the best way to attract consumers. According to previous cases, all of these organisations successfully developed new market niches owing to service innovativeness. Yet, little research has focused on what kind of new mobile banking services increases consumers’ invested specific assets. Hence, an important topic for study is how organisations can create innovative, special and valuable services to attract investment of specific assets by consumers.
Drawing on TCA, this study integrates the works of literature on specific assets and service innovativeness to predict consumers’ sustainable relationship behaviour while using new mobile banking services and to explore the essential factors that affect consumers’ willingness to invest in a sustainable relationship with a new mobile bank. The empirical results indicate that different types of service innovativeness (e.g., personnel service innovativeness and technology service innovativeness) compose different specific assets in various banking service channels and that these specific assets can encourage consumers to invest in a sustainable and close relationship with new mobile banking. The implications for theory and practice for enhancing consumers’ sustainable relationships with new mobile banks driven by different cross-channel-specific assets and service innovativeness conditions are discussed.
Data for Fun: the Role of Hedonic Perception on Disclosure of Personal Data to Mobile Apps
Consumers give personal data in exchange for mobile apps. Three different between subject experimental studies tested the relation between hedonic perception and disclosure. Scenarios described an app’s download from an unknown company that required disclosure of personal information. Manipulation involved the kind of app (budget manager vs. game) and presence of endorsement (studies 2 and 3). Mturk respondents were randomly assigned to conditions. The first study confirmed the influence of trust, which was expected, and familiarity, that was not expected. Mediation analysis showed that trust mediates the relation of hedonic perception and disclosure. Hedonic perception had a positive impact on trust and disclosure. Study two confirmed previous results, and a moderation analysis of endorsement and trust was also significant, positively influencing disclosure. The finding that lower levels of familiarity positively impacts disclosure could be related to individual's being used to online environment (i.e. heavy users) and therefore presenting reduced levels of risk perception and privacy concerns (Tsay-Vogel et.al, 2018). Study three verified these relations. The negative influence of risk perception and privacy concerns was significant, either meaning that MTurkers are not heavy users or that this relation does not hold to the app’s context. Differently from study two, endorsement moderation was not significant. Study three also allowed to confirm the mediation effect of risk in the relations of (1) hedonic perceptions and disclosure, and of (2) hedonic perceptions and trust. The relation between risk and disclosure is well established in the literature. The mediation of trust and risk on the relation of hedonic perceptions and disclosure is partially explained by prior studies. Van der Heijden (2004) asserts that perception of hedonism determines the use of information systems more strongly than the perception of utilitarianism. Jia et.al (2017) state that, after natural disasters, increase in use of hedonic apps reduced risk perception. Nevertheless, the relation between hedonism, trust and disclosure need further investigating. Results of the three studies confirmed the effects expected that trust positively affects disclosure and that it mediates the relation between hedonic perceptions of the app and disclosure. This is an intriguing result, since we expected that only familiar companies would be trusted and, because of that trust, the willingness to disclosure would be higher. One explanation could be the presence of cues such as endorsement, which was only partially confirmed and still needs to be considered in the future. Other studies could also explore the relation between hedonism and the privacy paradox. Hedonic apps may induce people to perceive the risk as more psychologically distant than utilitarian apps, helping explain the gap between privacy concern and disclosure behaviour (Hallam & Zanella, 2017).
What Can Big Data and Text Analytics Tell Us About the Relationship Between the Weather and Customers’ Experience of Restaurant Service?
In the service field, there is a growing interest in utilizing customer-generated data to gain insights into research problems that have not been well understood through conventional methods. The goal of this study is to explore and demonstrate the utility of big data analytics by using it to study the core service variables that have been extensively studied in past decades, such as customers’ emotions, because it contributes to customer satisfaction, loyalty, repeat purchases, favorable word-of-mouth recommendations, and ultimately higher profitability. Customers’ emotions are a complex consumption experience within a restaurant service setting. Several factors may influence a customer’s emotions or experience, including environment stimuli, employees, marketing mix, and so on. The weather, or temperature cues, are important factors with regard to environment stimuli, but limited research has discussed this in a service setting. Temperature cues are related to a sensory stimulus that is derived from embodied cognition theory, which explains how external stimulants influence consumers’ perceptions, judgments, and behavior. There are inconsistent findings in the relationships between temperature and emotions. Thus, this research further considers three important boundary conditions, including the uncertainty of consumption in a restaurant service setting, the avatar of reviewers, and the expertise of reviewers, through a big data analytics approach. Customer-generated content on the Internet continues to grow and has an impact on the service industry. This study employed one of the most important types of consumer-generated content - i.e., online customer reviews of restaurants - to understand the experiences of restaurant customers and their relationship with temperature cues (i.e., the weather). Because of the popularity of e-commerce and social media, several consumers prefer to express their post-consumption thoughts on an online platform. A sentiment analysis, via text mining, was applied to first deconstruct a large quantity of customer reviews, using the Mozenda crawling tool to collect data from the iPeen.com website in Taiwan. The sentiment score was calculated from the review content and was regarded as the dependent variable (i.e., consumption emotion). The independent variable, namely the temperature data, was retrieved from the Taichung City Observatory from January 2010 to October 2017. The findings of a multiple regression analysis revealed that when the consumption in service setting is uncertain, and the reviewer is a novice who uses a virtual avatar, a higher temperature will lead to negative customers’ consumption emotions. Conversely, when the consumption in service setting is certain, there was no interaction effect on consumption emotions. With an understanding of how an external environment stimulus (e.g., the weather) affects consumption emotions in writing online review content, marketers could monitor the external environment to boost their service quality, which in turn should strengthen their consumption experience.
Coaching of Poorly Qualified Individuals as a Transformative Service – a Qualitative-Empirical Study
Transformative service research (TSR) is one of the ten overarching research priorities in service sciences. It differentiates from the measurement of management-relevant constructs like satisfaction or loyalty in service research, by focusing on the improvement of well-being of both individuals and collectives through services. Disparities in the level of well-being are common in financial, health care and social services and mostly distinct among minorities and socially deprived people, who may find mainstream services inappropriate.
In this research study we analyse a general problem of the German labor market from a TSR point of view. Continuing changes through international division of labor have an impact on the German economy. Due to a growing disregard of people without job based certificates, employee qualifications are increasingly required at the labor market. Further education services may have a great impact on the employability of poorly qualified people, who are well-known for their heterogeneity and individual educational experiences, inducing high complexity for guidance and coaching. Therefore, the research project focuses on the coaching of poorly qualified individuals (clients) as a transformative service, to improve well-being and to transform lives. This certainly requires the involvement of clients and their service or activity system. The empirical study investigates the interactive process of clients‘ personal transformation, how it can be improved and its possible impact on the success of further education of low-skilled individuals.
Since there are only insufficient empirical findings available on this kind of service so far, the research follows the qualitative paradigm. The research design draws on qualitative interviews with participants and coaches from further education services, which will be analysed according to principles of content analysis. The first study (clients) was conducted in 2018 with a total of 17 interviews and initial results confirmed the assumed heterogeneity, for example in terms of situational causes and motivation. Contrary to the widespread belief of a general lack of motivation, many facets of motivation have been reported by the clients. In the next step, several frameworks were created in an inductive process in order to explain the process of value co-creation in the interaction between NFQs and coaches and to give recommendations for improving the transformative service of coaching. Subsequently, the second study involving interviews with coaches will take place in autumn of 2019. Results of both studies will be presented and in addition, initial insights into the service interaction and the reflection of the coaches from the second study will be given to answer the research questions.
The Global Mind Monitor: a Tool to Develop Intercultural Competencies of Service Employees
As a result of increasing international travel, migration, globalization, and increased buying power of ethnic minorities the number of service encounters involving customers and service employees from different cultural backgrounds increases (Sharma et al., 2009; Stauss and Mang 1999; Furrer and Sollberger 2007). Therefore intercultural competence of service employees becomes more and more important for creating satisfaction of both customers and service employees (Sharma et al., 2009).
The concept of intercultural competence can be defined as “the ability to communicate effectively and appropriately in intercultural situations based on one’s intercultural knowledge, skills and attitudes” (Deardorff, 2004,p.194). Based on this definition, Deardorff developed an intercultural competence development model in which (context) specific attitudes, knowledge and skills lead towards an internal outcome of personality trait development, for instance adaptability, openness and initiative. Deardorff’s model is comprehensive and overarches constructs such as 1) Cultural Intelligence, consisting of attitude, (meta) knowledge and behavior (Ang, Van Dyne et al., 2007) and 2) Multicultural Personality (Van der Zee and Van Oudenhoven, 2000) consisting of the personality traits openness, adaptability and social initiative.
One of the key challenges in studies on the benefits of education and training in the field of internationalization is the assessment of its effectiveness (Deardorff 2006, 2015; Peng & Wu, 2016). In this assessment, it is key that individuals are enabled to reflect on their learning experience and identify specific competences in which they have developed over time, taking into account the different aspects of intercultural competence (Leask, 2015).
To provide a tool that helps students and employees monitor and reflect on their learning experiences the Global Mind Monitor was developed. The Global Mind Monitor is a quantitative measurement instrument specifically developed to assess intercultural competence development on several dimensions (Global Mind Monitor, 2018). In the first place, the Global Mind Monitor is a reflection instrument developed for individual users, who can monitor their personal development on the different dimensions of intercultural competence over time in a user-friendly online environment. Moreover, the monitor provides institutes or companies in the service industry insights in the effectiveness of their education or training programs for intercultural competencies.
With the poster presentation we intend to introduce the Global Mind Monitor. Furthermore, we look forward to discussing the relevance of monitoring the intercultural development of service employees, sharing the results of the monitor so far, and exploring ways to integrate the Global Mind Monitor approach into service organizations for the benefit of increasing satisfaction of both customers and service employees.
Self-Ordering Systems and its Impact on Customer Satisfaction in the Food and Beverage Sector: Findings from the Customer Satisfaction Index of Singapore
Self-service technologies in the form of self-ordering systems have been increasingly adopted by F&B operators in Singapore to reduce manpower usage for the sector. These companies tend to be concerned about the willingness of customers to use these technologies as well as its impact on perception of service quality and customer satisfaction. Drawing upon data from the Customer Satisfaction Index of Singapore (CSISG), a national face-to-face study which measures customer satisfaction across a wide range of industries, we explore how frequent use of self-ordering technologies by customers impacts customer satisfaction, perception of service quality, as well as how preference for its use differs across F&B sub-sectors. Firstly, looking at Fast Food restaurants, where there has been increasing implementation of self-ordering kiosks, we find that while frequent users of such technologies do not have lower customer satisfaction or perceptions of service quality as compared to those who continue to engage service staff for these purposes, the proportion of such users remain lower. We next look at customers’ preference for the use of such technologies across other F&B sub-sectors. We find that preference for their use remains low and appears heterogeneously distributed across different sub-sectors and age groups. This suggests that at the moment, despite the potential benefits, customer adoption of these technologies at F&B outlets may vary.
Exploring Factors Affecting Consumer Intention to Participate in Service Recovery
Customer participation in service recovery has been confirmed to enhance recovery satisfaction and tendency to repurchase in the future. However, exiting literature lacks studies exploring antecedents that influence customers’ willingness to participate in service recovery after a service failure. Such negligence is regrettable because consumer intention to participate in service creation and delivery has been found a valid predictor of service performance and customer value. Some prior research even noticed that forcing customers to co-produce services may undermine perceived value and satisfaction if customers have little or no intention to participate in service processes. Thus, gaining a better understanding of factors affecting customer intention to participate in service recovery is crucial. To close the current research gap, this study proposed that the participation level in service is an important determinant to increase customers’ willingness to participate in service recovery. The current study further suggested that the relationship between level of customer participation in service and customer intension to participate in service recovery is moderated by service failure types and stability of service failures. The enhancing effect of participation level on intention to participate service recovery is stronger under the outcome failure than the process failure. On the other hand, when the service failure is stable, the positive relationship between level of customer participation in service and customer intension to participate in service recovery is weaker, compared with when the service failure is unstable. Last, this study posited that the interactive effects among level of customer participation in service, service failure type and stability of service failure is mediated by expectancy of participating service recovery to influence customer intention to participate in service recovery. According to the proposed framework, the practical implications of this study was suggested.
Competitive Showrooming: Do Consumers’ Moral Considerations Matter?
Due to technological developments in retailing, consumers increasingly engage in competitive showrooming (e.g., Burns et al. 2018), which refers to gathering information at physical retailers but subsequently purchasing online from competitors (Gensler et al. 2017). As retailers invest resources in providing services (e.g., sales advice) without corresponding compensation, researchers and managers consider competitive showrooming as harmful for physical retailers and as morally questionable (Chiou et al. 2012). Thus, developing effective strategies against competitive showrooming is of superior managerial relevance. To develop such strategies, a detailed understanding of the underlying psychological process of competitive showrooming is warranted.
With our research, we contribute to a refined understanding of competitive showrooming by investigating a) which psychological process explains the underlying mechanism of competitive showrooming and b) how a consumer’s moral considerations influence the decision to competitively showroom.
Prior research indicates that higher perceptions of economic benefits of competitive showrooming (e.g., price savings) explain consumers’ competitive showrooming (Gensler et al. 2017). Drawing on switching literature (e.g., Bansal et al. 2004), we hypothesize that a consumers’ calculative commitment towards a physical retailer mediates the effect of economic benefits on competitive showrooming intention. In a showrooming context, calculative commitment towards a physical retailer results from the cognitive assessment of the economic benefits of competitive showrooming (e.g., Geyskens et al. 1996). To test these relationships, we carried out an initial one-factorial (economic benefits: high vs. low) between-subjects experiment. To manipulate economic benefits of competitive showrooming, we altered the price benefits of a laptop in an online store compared to a physical store. All constructs were measured using established multi-item scales.
With a second study, we replicate the mediation effect and test the moderating effect of perceived moral intensity on a consumer’s decision to competitively showroom. In particular, perceived moral intensity of competitive showrooming describes the relevance of competitive showrooming to a consumer’s moral decision process (Jones 1991). Research shows that perceived moral intensity reduces intentions to act unethically (e.g., Singhapakdi et al. 2001). As consumers weight the perceived costs and benefits of morally questionable behavior (Schweitzer et al. 2004), we hypothesize a less negative influence of the economic benefits on a consumer’s calculative commitment towards the physical retailer when a consumer’s level of perceived moral intensity is high. To test this hypothesis, we use a 2 (economic benefits: high vs. low) by 2 (perceived moral intensity: high vs. low) between-subjects experiment. To manipulate the economic benefits of competitive showrooming, we use the same stimuli of the previous study. We use fictitious newspaper articles about the consequences of competitive showrooming for physical retailers (positive vs. negative) to prime an individual’s level of perceived moral intensity.
We will present empirical results at the conference. References are available upon request.
Tourist-To-Tourist (T2T) Interaction and Co-Creation Experiences in Tourism Destination
Due to the wider service to the service network in the tourism industry, the attainment of memorable tourism experiences and tourist satisfaction is challenging. When people travel to the tourists’ destination, in addition to their interaction with the various actors (such as service providers, transportations personnel, hotel staff), they encounter have enough opportunity to interact directly and indirectly with another tourist. Hence, in the tourism eco-system, the other tourists play important role in forming the tourism experience. This study explores how Tourist-to-Tourist (T2T) interaction form the co-creation experiences in the service to service network and how the co-creation experiences lead to tourist destination attachment and satisfaction. The Customer-Dominant Logic perspective serves as a foundation of this untapped phenomenon. The data for the study will be collected from the tourists visiting three most famous destinations in Malaysia namely Genting Highlands, Penang, and Melaka. It is expected that the findings of this study will serve as a foundation for T2T orientation for tourism ecosystem.
(Note: The data collection is in the process and full article will be ready for submission by the given deadline).
Soul of Service- the Enduring Frontier
The era unfolding around us is full of debates and discussions on how technology in the form of Artificial intellgence, Robotics, and big data that is taking away focus from the sheer sensitivities and emotional intelligence that human touch brings, and machines lack. In this context, TMTC and its service orientation stands out!
As an outcome of Mr. JRD Tata’s vision to foster an educational institution that would assist, cultivate and contribute to the development of professional management for the economic development of the country, Tata Management Training Centre (TMTC) was established in 1956. India had about only 2-3 management training institutes back then. As the Learning and Development arm of the Tata Group’s Human Resources function, TMTC takes the pride of being the 2nd oldest corporate university in the world.
The hallowed arches of TMTC have witnessed the infusion of fresh talent, and nurtured it, every year since the first batch of Tata Administrative Services (TAS). TMTC has had the honour of hosting leadership development programmes for officers of the Indian Administrative Services and other civil services.
Today, TMTC designs and delivers world-class leadership development interventions for 110 Tata Group Companies, with faculty drawn from premier institutions including Harvard Business School and Michigan University. The premises have residential as well as dining facilities for the participants and the faculty. While the quality of the programs is excellent because of these partnerships, each of the participant also has an experience of the hospitality and the stay at TMTC. This is due to the service rendered by the 35 staff members. Many of them are lifers in their current roles and have roles like butler, steward and cooks. Though they have the basic education, each of the participants go back with memory of their exceptional service and impeccable honesty. Second and third generation of these members continue to work at TMTC. Despite being the second and third generation, they carry the same set of strong values and principles towards discharing the important corporate and human value tenants.
The article while sharing anecdotes which demonstrates these qualities also discusses the inner motivation and the soul of this exceptional service orientation. In fact, this has significantly contributed to the service of the institute.
Assessing the Effectiveness of Host-Guest Interaction on Value Co-Creation: An Empirical Study in the Context of Peer-to-Peer Accommodation
The peer-to-peer (P2P) accommodation industry has grown explosively worldwide in the past few years. It has been claimed that P2P accommodation provides a unique experience compared to traditional forms of accommodation. One typical feature is the meaningful and in-depth interaction that guests contact with hosts. Previous studies have mainly focused on the business model of P2P accommodation sharing, as well as the motivation and satisfaction of guest’s purchasing and consuming behavior. However, few studies have theoretically or empirically explored the host-guest interaction issue in the sharing economy context. From the perspective of service-dominant logic, the interaction between provider and customer is the prerequisite of their value co-creation. There is a urgent need to delicate the relationship between host-guest interaction and guest’s value co-creation behavior in the P2P accommodation context. To fill the research gaps, this study aims to identify the dimensions of host-guest interaction and explore their relationships with guest’s value co-creation behavior.
This research consists of two studies. Study 1 conceptualizes host-guest interaction and develops its scale. Guests who purchased sharing accommodation service and the hosts were interviewed. And the online customer reviews were analyzed using content analysis as an alternative way to generate the initial items of host-guest interaction. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were conducted to establish scale reliability and validity using separate samples. The results showed that host-guest interaction is a multi-dimensional construct including three components, namely, service interaction, information interaction and interpersonal interaction. Study 2 is a survey design to explore the relationship between host-guest interaction and guest’s value co-creation behavior. The results showed that the guest perceived trust mediates the relationship between host-guest interaction and guest’s value co-creation. Compared with the other two types of interaction, interpersonal interaction exerts greater influence on guest’s trust towards the host. In addition, the guest’s sociability moderates the effect of host-guest interaction on trust such that the effect is stronger when the guests have high tendency of interacting with others.
This study will contribute to the existing literature in the following ways. First, it develops a theory-grounded, conceptual host-guest interaction model and a reliable host-guest interaction scale in the P2P accommodation context. Second, it enriches the research findings of value co-creation in P2P accommodation field by clarifying the linking mechanism between host-guest interaction and guest’s value co-creation behavior.
Impact of Social Media Marketing Strategy on Accommodation Selection of Sri Lankan Domestic Travellers
Communication platforms provided through social media have challenged basic assumptions regarding the purchasing process. The consumer decision journey is reevaluated here to highlight the extent and implications of these changes for travel and tourism marketing. This research is conducted to investigate the relationship amid the social media management strategy of travel accommodations affects and domestic travelers travel accommodations selection. Sri Lanka, tourism is an important sector which provides an immense contribution to the county GDP. Tourists in Sri Lanka can be categorized in to foreign and domestic. With the end of civil war, domestic tourism has increased where every corner of the country has become a paradise of local travelers. Travel accommodations such as hotels, boutique hotels, hostels, apartments, villas, bungalows, rooms, camping sites also emerging day to day to cater to growing tourism demands.
Marketing has become key factor in the tourism in Sri Lanka. Social media marketing is popular among travel accommodations because it can implement using free social media platforms, Social media has extended reachability and it is less cost. But blindly investing on the social media management will not provide the results as expected. Therefore this research investigated four different factors of social media and how they affect in travellers. After conducting a literature review, research hypothesis was derived to investigate the relationship. Then a quantitative research design was implemented which was conducted as an online survey. The primary research instrument of data collection was a questionnaire. The questionnaire distributed among online communities and responses were collected respectively. The results were analyzed using descriptive analysis and regression analysis and results were discussed in the discussion section which was lead to several new insights in social media involvement of consumer. Further recommendations on how to implement a social media profile of consumer which will attract more travelers was provided in the research conclusion.
Key words: Social media marketing, Sri Lanka tourism, Travel accommodations, Review & Recommendations, Content quality
Discovering the Personality Traits of Opinion Leaders in Social Networks
The concept of opinion leaders was originally from the two-step flow of communication, proposed by Lazarsfeld and Katz in 1948. Opinion leader was proposed to observe the citizens' participation in public activities. The communication of information is passed to the opinion leaders through the mass media, and then passed on to the public through the opinion leaders, and the interpersonal communication can more effectively change the attitude of the audience than the public communication. However, the content providers on the Internet have also shifted from network service providers to network users to initiatively provide and share because of the rise of the Internet. This transformation has created many influential bloggers with numerous followers and the rise of web celebrities, which also enable the opinion leaders to spread opinions rapidly in the social network and is increasingly valued and trusted by online users. However, there may be several opinion leaders within a network. Hence, understanding the areas of influence of opinion leaders and the qualities of opinion leaders are often more important than understanding how powerful they are, and it can bring more competitive advantages to the organizations. This study selects five different type of groups the strength of the linkages among social network members and the different centralities of the members within the network will be analyzed through the analysis of UCINET. In addition, it can help determine who the opinion leaders are in the social network. Next, we analyze the personality traits and behaviors to discover whether opinion leaders of different groups have differences in personality traits and related behavior. The results showed that opinion leaders of different groups have the personality traits of agreeableness and extraversion; moreover, opinion leaders from professional-based groups have the characteristics of conscientiousness. Our findings can help organizations understand the leaders in the groups and have the basis and reference for the selection of appropriate managers or opinion leaders for information dissemination in the future.
When Time is Running Out – A Conceptual Approach to Time Pressure in Services
Time pressure has been a well-researched topic in various disciplines (e.g. psychology, social sciences, marketing and management). Research has yet been limited to the provider sphere as well as the customer sphere (e.g. Dhar/Nowlis 1999, Suri/Monroe 2003, Godinho et al. 2016). It either examines activities that customers (e.g. processing provider information) or providers perform autonomously. We propose that time pressure is furthermore relevant in the joint sphere, which is characterized by the interaction between the customer and the provider. Understanding the perception of time pressure in the joint sphere is crucial as the customer is an integral part of service provision and both the customer and the firm together co-create value (Grönroos 2011). As the customer has the ability to influence the service process, research needs to go one step further and has to consider perceived time pressure during service use.
When customers sense a cognitive discrepancy between the time available and the time required for performing specific tasks or activities (Hornik 1984, Lin/Wu 2005) they perceive time pressure. While this may be conducive to some customers by increasing their efficiency (Locke/Latham 2002) other customers will feel hurried, stressed or impatient (Maule et al. 2000, Thomas et al. 2010) during service use. Potentially, they might not enjoy the service and might even affect service personnel or other customers.
We address this issue through a systematic review. Based on this review we integrate existing theories and empirical findings across the disciplines of psychology, marketing, management and retail into a framework that conceptualizes time pressure in the context of services.
Customers differ from each other in the extent to which they perceive time pressure. During service provision, this depends on conceptual factors (e.g. motive for service use) and service characteristics (e.g. the number of sequences in the service encounter). Existing research proves customers to show cognitive as well as affective reactions when perceiving time pressure. Especially negative emotions like anger exert influence on the interaction with service personnel. Few studies show that the perception of time pressure negatively influences service evaluation (e.g. Strombeck/Wakefield 2008). We propose that reactions to time pressure also affect the overall experience (Verhoef et al. 2009).
This article makes three contributions. Firstly, we systemize the concept of time pressure by means of an extant literature review and by bridging the works conducted in different fields. Secondly, the article provides a conceptual approach to time pressure in the context of services, thus extending the existing literature on experienced temporality in service processes and its outcomes as called for by various authors (Lovelock/Gummesson 2004, Woermann/Rokka 2015). Thirdly, this approach paves the way for creating avenues for further research.
How Social Media Can Contribute to Wellbeing Amongst Autists and Their Families – A Study based on Virtual Communities Content
A challenge for public policies is the inclusion of different people in the production process or in the most diverse aspects of life. Communication, for example, is something basic and highly necessary for coexistence. From the dawn of humanity, the human being transmits ideas and desires through various means, among which speech, gestures, and expressions, to live in the community. In recent years, communication has gained new contours with the advent on the internet and written communication through cellular devices. Language written in these media has become more accessible to those who might otherwise be excluded from the process of communication and living in society. This is the case with ASD - autism spectrum disorders. Autism is a term that designates different degrees and types of disorders, all linked to the way people communicate and perceive the world.
This paper aims to know how social media can contribute to ASDs individuals and their families.
We sought to analyze the content of seven different virtual communities linked to autism on Facebook. The selection of communities took place in two ways: the number of community members on the Facebook platform and the appearance of it in search rankings on Google.Data collection took place between June and August 201 and, from this, a list of 300 posts from each of these communities.
Virtual communities related to autism were created to encourage the promotion of support and enlightenment to those in need. Some of them are maintained with the support of hospitals, clinics or laboratories, supporting the disclosure of these brands directly, by offering specialized products or indirectly through public relations, with the appearance of doctors directly clarifying the doubts of potential patients or people or through sponsorship of events or even the NGO's own website.
Because of this, the content of the type "take your doubts with the doctor" are highly shared and are among those that have greater repercussion and engagement. Content that generates clarification and eliminates myths that the commonplace cultivates.
Virtual communities are important tools to increase wellbeing amongst autists and their families, by accessing good content and creating a collaboration network, which allows them to get and generate the warning and inspirational content from themselves and specialists.
Furthermore, phrases like "parents of autistic will understand" and "only for parents of autistic" are highlighted. Social networks have given voice especially to parents who seek to defend their children from the many aggressions. Among the concerns of the members of the communities are still: early diagnosis, better treatments, school inclusion, social inclusion, laws that guarantee rights to autistic. Finally, it is evident the emotional support that these communities offer their members, making them more welcomed, informed and identified with their peers.
Value Co-Creation Patterns in Multi-Actor Service Interactions: A Framework for Collaborative Consumption Platforms
Collaborative consumption (CC) platforms like Airbnb, Uber or TaskRabbit particularly expedite service interactions among a multitude of versatile actors (Figueiredo & Scaraboto, 2016). The platform provider acts as a network orchestrator (Larivière et al., 2017) by connecting customers and peer service providers (Benoit et al., 2017). Sharing and interaction of actors is typically a major part of the CC platform’s offering (Lusch et al., 2016), leading to the development of dynamic service ecosystems for value co-creation (Fehrer et al., 2018). Although it is well-known that value is co-created by multiple actors (Vargo & Lusch, 2016), we lack a systematic understanding of value co-creation patterns, meaning which value dimension individuals co-create when and with which actor in a dynamic network on CC platforms. Economic value may emerge for Airbnb guests for getting a low-cost accommodation from hosts, while interactions with other travelers may lead to social value. Knowledge about value co-creation patterns on CC platforms would enable platform providers to adequately manage and foster value co-creation across all actors.
While research has already focused on understanding how value is co-created and which activities lead to value co-creation (Grönroos & Voima, 2013; McColl-Kennedy et al., 2015), literature has not looked on distinctive patterns of value co-creation within a network of multiple, different actors. Thus, this research aims to explore value co-creation patterns in collaborative, platform-based networks. Specifically, we take on the perspective of platform participants and focus on answering the following research questions: (1) Which actors co-create value jointly on CC platforms? (2) Can we identify patterns of value co-creation which distinctively describe which value dimension a participant creates with which actor? (3) Which CC context factors influence these value co-creation patterns?
To address these questions, we conducted 57 semi-structured interviews with participants of five CC platforms between April and August 2018, leading to 553 single-spaced pages of transcript that we are analyzing qualitatively (Miles et al., 2014). The findings suggest that platform participants co-create five value dimensions (efficiency, support, social, moral, and hedonic value) mainly with two actors: the platform provider and peer-participants. The still ongoing analysis reveals three value co-creation patterns for CC platform participants: the social collaborator, efficiency seeker, and cautious sharer. While the social collaborator co-creates social value primarily with peers and moral value with the platform brand, the efficiency seeker co-creates efficiency and financial benefits through the interaction with primarily the platform provider, but also with peer-participants. The cautious sharer co-creates social, hedonic and moral value primarily with peer-participants, but simultaneously needs the co-creation of support value with the platform provider. Our results indicate, that these patterns may depend on the platform industry or individual participant characteristics such as their degree of professionalism and CC experience.