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Exploring cultural differences in customer forgiveness behavior

Exploring cultural differences in customer forgiveness behavior Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a deeper insight on the psychological mechanism of customer forgiveness viewed from a cross cultural perspective. Design/methodology/approach – Drawing on the cognitive appraisal theory, this paper relates forgiveness cognitive, emotional and motivational patterns with differences in cultural values' orientations. Findings – The insights from this paper suggest that idiocentric customers are more likely to adopt problem solving strategies when they decide to forgive, whereas allocentric ones tend to regulate their emotional responses to their environment such as expressing benevolence and goodwill, as they are more sensitive to maintaining connectedness within group members. Research limitations/implications – Albeit conceptual and exploratory in nature, this paper is intended as a beginning for further empirical validation and theoretical refinement. The paper contends that forgiveness is a dynamic, interactive process that should be investigated with different sequential orders. Furthermore, as customer forgiveness is related to time, longitudinal studies are more appropriate to test the proposed model. Practical implications – Firms serving international markets as well as multiethnic ones would have advantage to understand cultural differences in shaping customer forgiveness. This is relevant to conceive efficient marketing strategies aiming at managing interpersonal conflicts with wronged customers and promoting benevolence and goodwill. Originality/value – Little is known about customer forgiveness. This paper adds a new insight by examining cultural effects on forgiveness process, allowing for a more comprehensive view of customer forgiveness triggers. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Service Management Emerald Publishing

Exploring cultural differences in customer forgiveness behavior

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1757-5818
DOI
10.1108/09564230910978502
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a deeper insight on the psychological mechanism of customer forgiveness viewed from a cross cultural perspective. Design/methodology/approach – Drawing on the cognitive appraisal theory, this paper relates forgiveness cognitive, emotional and motivational patterns with differences in cultural values' orientations. Findings – The insights from this paper suggest that idiocentric customers are more likely to adopt problem solving strategies when they decide to forgive, whereas allocentric ones tend to regulate their emotional responses to their environment such as expressing benevolence and goodwill, as they are more sensitive to maintaining connectedness within group members. Research limitations/implications – Albeit conceptual and exploratory in nature, this paper is intended as a beginning for further empirical validation and theoretical refinement. The paper contends that forgiveness is a dynamic, interactive process that should be investigated with different sequential orders. Furthermore, as customer forgiveness is related to time, longitudinal studies are more appropriate to test the proposed model. Practical implications – Firms serving international markets as well as multiethnic ones would have advantage to understand cultural differences in shaping customer forgiveness. This is relevant to conceive efficient marketing strategies aiming at managing interpersonal conflicts with wronged customers and promoting benevolence and goodwill. Originality/value – Little is known about customer forgiveness. This paper adds a new insight by examining cultural effects on forgiveness process, allowing for a more comprehensive view of customer forgiveness triggers.

Journal

Journal of Service ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 7, 2009

Keywords: Customer satisfaction; Customer services quality; Consumer behaviour; Culture

References