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Title: Hurting or helping? The effect of service agents’ workplace ostracism on customer service perceptions
Authors: Wan, EW
Chan, KW 
Chen, RP
Keywords: Workplace ostracism
Efficacy and relational needs
Customer service perceptions
Customer coproduction
Customer control and relational values
Issue Date: 2016
Publisher: Springer
Source: Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 2016, v. 44, no. 6, p. 746-769 How to cite?
Journal: Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science 
Abstract: 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.
ISSN: 0092-0703
EISSN: 1552-7824
DOI: 10.1007/s11747-015-0466-1
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