Department of Marketing
Extant research confirms the importance of cocreating value with customers in service marketing, yet little is known about the impact of service agents’ work experiences on customers’ service perceptions. This research examines how service agents’ workplace ostracism from different sources (supervisors versus coworkers) influences customers’ perceived coproduction value, perceived service performance, and actual purchases. Three laboratory experiments and one survey reveal a double-edged sword effect of workplace ostracism and its contingency such that (1) supervisor ostracism reduces customers’ perceived control value in customer–agent coproduction through threatening service agents’ efficacy needs when the agents experience low servicing empowerment; (2) coworker ostracism enhances customers’ perceived relational value in coproduction through threatening service agents’ relational needs when they expect a long-term relationship with customers; and (3) customers’ perceived control and relational values increase their perceived service performance, and customer relational value also increases the amount of purchases. Our findings reveal that service agents’ workplace ostracism may actually help or harm customers’ service perceptions, depending on the source of ostracism. The results provide significant implications for how organizations can better manage employees’ perceived ostracism in the workplace and strategically improve customers’ experience in service coproduction with excluded agents.
Workplace ostracism, Efficacy and relational needs, Customer service perceptions, Customer coproduction, Customer control and relational values
Source Publication Title
Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science
The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11747-015-0466-1
This research is supported by a Hong Kong SAR General Research Grant (755511) awarded to the first author and a Hong Kong SAR General Research Grant (POLYU-B-Q36V) awarded to the second author. The authors thank Deep Batra for his professional computer programming in the laboratory experiments and Fangyu Zhang for the survey data collection.
Link to Publisher's Edition
Wan, E., Chan, K., & Chen, R. (2016). Hurting or helping? The effect of service agents’ workplace ostracism on customer service perceptions. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 44 (6), 746-769. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11747-015-0466-1
Additional FilesJA-5340-29325_suppl I.pdf (177 kB)
Supplementary material I
JA-5340-29325_suppl II.pdf (140 kB)
Supplementary material II
JA-5340-29325_suppl III.pdf (120 kB)
Supplementary material III