How should I respond to a complaining customer? A model of Cognitive-Emotive-Behavioral from the perspective of restaurant service employees

P.T. Loo, C. Khoo, H.C. Boo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Many studies on coping have been conducted in diverse industries but within the hospitality industry, studies on how employees cope with customer complaints have only just begun, despite the task being one of the most significant stressors amongst service employees. The aim of this paper was to explore the cognitive appraisals, emotional elicitations, emotional coping behavior and complaint handling behavior of service employees. In-depth interviews were conducted with a total of 26 frontline restaurant employees. The results show that service employees engaged in different cognitive appraisals and emotional reactions in response to different customer complaints. Subsequently, they engaged in different emotional coping behaviors including both positive and negative of avoidance and approach. Theoretically, a model was developed to depict a holistic picture of Cognitive-Emotive-Behavioral in a complaint-handling context. The findings might assist industry practitioners to devise better complaint handling and coping strategies to enhance both customer and employee satisfaction. © 2021
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Hospitality Management
Volume95
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cognitive appraisals
  • Emotional coping behaviors
  • Emotional elicitations
  • Service employees
  • Table service restaurants

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