Journal Article

Social connectedness and well-being of elderly customers: Do employee-to-customer interactions matter?


While a plethora of research examines the antecedents and outcomes of favorable employee-to-customer interaction in the hospitality industry, little empirical investigation has been conducted so far to understand the effect of employee-to-customer interaction on customers’ social well-being. This omission is particularly intriguing in the context of elderly care homes whereby employee-to-customer interaction is both intense and crucial. Building on a transformative service research perspective, the present study draws on a mixed-methods approach using a sequential quantitative-qualitative design to understand the interface between favorable employee-to-customer interaction, social connectedness, and social well-being. Using data from 267 elderly individuals in care homes combined with data from three focus groups in China, the study confirms the role of favorable employee-to-customer interaction in enhancing the social connectedness of elderly customers. Both employee-to-customer interaction and social connectedness are also found to positively influence elderly customers’ social well-being. Findings from the qualitative study lend support to the proposed theoretical model and further demonstrate how elderly consumers’ social well-being is impacted in a transformative way by favorable interactions with employees. Qualitative findings show how both employees and elderly customers deploy different resources to pursue transformative outcomes of value exchange and value co-creation. The study advances transformative service research and suggests implications for policy and managers in elderly care homes and the wider hospitality industry. = 尽管大量研究考察了酒店业员工与客户之间良好互动的前因和结果,但迄今为止,很少有实证调查了解员工与客户互动对客户社会福利的影响. 这一遗漏在养老院的背景下尤其有趣,因为员工与客户之间的互动既激烈又至关重要. 基于变革性服务研究视角,本研究采用混合方法方法,采用连续定量定性设计,以了解有利的员工与客户互动、社会联系和社会福利之间的关系. 该研究使用来自267名养老院老年人的数据,结合来自中国三个重点群体的数据,证实了有利的员工与客户互动在增强老年客户的社会联系方面的作用. 员工与客户之间的互动和社会联系也会对老年客户的社会福利产生积极影响. 定性研究的结果支持了所提出的理论模型,并进一步证明了老年消费者的社会福利如何通过与员工的良好互动而受到变革性影响. 定性研究结果表明,员工和老年客户如何部署不同的资源,以实现价值交换和价值共创的变革性成果. 该研究推动了变革性服务研究,并对养老院和更广泛的酒店业的政策和管理者提出了建议.

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Feng Kuo
Altinay, Levent
Alrawadieh, Zaid

Oxford Brookes departments

Oxford Brookes Business School


Year of publication: 2022
Date of RADAR deposit: 2022-10-25

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

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