Models link between employees’ behavior and short‐ and long‐term customer perceptions. Subjects were confronted with five different video taped non‐routine service encounters (study 1) and eight manipulated routine service encounters (study 2). In study 1, two judges encoded behavior of service employees. With three types of behavior it was possible to explain customers’ feelings of warmth. Warmth also correlated with measures such as likeability, perceived quality and service loyalty. Study 2 used a hotel reception as a setting, and service quality was manipulated in eight different ways. Warmth correlated highly with post‐experience measures, had a dual impact on customer loyalty and increased intention to stay and willingness to pay more for the same service. Service firms should train employees to deal with emotions and to learn empathic behaviors.
International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 1, 2002
Keywords: Retailing; Service quality; Loyalty; Employee attitudes; Customer satisfaction
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