Are cynical customers satisfied differently? Role of negative inferred motive and customer participation in service recovery

M. S. Balaji, Subhash Jha, Aditi Sarkar Sengupta, Balaji C. Krishnan

    Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

    29 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This study examines the role of consumer cynicism in service recovery, specifically the process through which cynicism influences customer satisfaction. This study also investigates the role of customer participation in the recovery process when alleviating outcomes among cynical customers. Across one pilot study and two experiments, we demonstrate that cynicism negatively moderates the effects of perceived justice on satisfaction. Additionally, we demonstrate the mediating role of negative inferred motive in the relationship between perceived justice and customer satisfaction. Highly cynical customers were found to less favorably evaluate customer satisfaction than less cynical customers, as they infer recovery efforts to be motivated by firms’ self-interest rather than customers’ interest. We also demonstrate that increasing customer participation in service recovery through joint recovery can overcome adverse outcomes and increase customer satisfaction among highly cynical customers. These findings offer important insights for service managers in designing effective service recovery strategies for cynical customers.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)109-118
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Business Research
    Volume86
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - May 2018

    Keywords

    • Customer participation
    • Cynicism
    • Negative inferred motive
    • Perceived justice
    • Satisfaction
    • Service recovery

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Marketing

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