Interpersonal Behaviors During Service Encounter and Their Impact on Service Outcome: an Application of the Interpersonal Circumplex Model

Zhenfeng Ma, McGill University
Laurette Dube, McGill University

Interpersonal Behaviors during Service Encounter and Their Impact on Service Outcome: An application of the Interpersonal Circumplex Model


(Abstract)

 

Zhenfeng Ma, McGill University

Laurette Dubé, McGill University

 

This research examines client-provider interpersonal exchanges and their impact on service outcome using the interpersonal circumplex model (ICM). This well-established theoretical approach anchored in the two basic dimensions of agency and communion maps interpersonal behavior and its outcomes in a lawful and predictable manner. A naturalistic field study used a prospective, within-episode design to observe both ongoing client-provider interactions and service outcome (32 clients, each being observed in interaction with providers on average for 46.8 service episodes). The pattern of agentic (dominant, submissive) and communal (agreeable, disagreeable) behaviors generally conformed to the basic propositions of the ICM. The results also show that client’s expression of dominance and agreeableness to provider and client’s exposure to provider agreeableness had positive effects on service outcome. Theoretical and managerial opportunities offered by the ICM for studying and designing client-provider interactions are discussed.
[ to cite ]:
Zhenfeng Ma and Laurette Dube (2006) ,"Interpersonal Behaviors During Service Encounter and Their Impact on Service Outcome: an Application of the Interpersonal Circumplex Model ", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 33, eds. Connie Pechmann and Linda Price, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 409-411.