Cross-cultural comparison of Spanish and British "service-with-a-smile" outcomes

Quinones, C., Rodríguez-Carvajal, R., Clarke, N. and Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, 2016. Cross-cultural comparison of Spanish and British "service-with-a-smile" outcomes. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 31 (5), pp. 960-975. ISSN 0268-3946

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Background: Employees working in the leisure service industry are required to show positive emotions when dealing with customers. However, empirical evidence confirms that faking emotions can lead to burnout. In contrast, employees that try to experience the emotions required by the role (i.e., Deep Acting [DA]) can lead to healthier outcomes. However, little is known about the process that underpins the link between DA and positive outcomes.
Purpose: Building on Cote’s social interaction model of emotion regulation and evidence linking customer satisfaction and DA, it was hypothesised that DA would be associated with employees’ self-actualization through customer interactions. This, in turn, was expected to explain the influence that DA has on relevant job attitudes (i.e., commitment, efficacy, turnover intentions). The model was tested in two countries with different emotional culture: Spain (i.e. impulsive) and the UK (i.e. institutional). Although UK was expected to report higher levels of effortful DA, the hypothesised process was expected to be the same.
Methodology: A cross-national design with theme park employees from Spain (N=208) and UK (N=204) was used. Hypotheses were tested with Multigroup Confirmatory Factor Analysis.
Findings: The relationship between job commitment and DA was mediated by self-actualization, and commitment partially explained the association between DA and professional efficacy in both countries. The impulsive-oriented country showed lower levels of DA and more positive job attitudes.
Value: It is concluded that training employees to re-interpret costumer demands in less harming ways is required. The need to attend to cultural values is also discussed.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Journal of Managerial Psychology
Creators: Quinones, C., Rodríguez-Carvajal, R., Clarke, N. and Griffiths, M.D.
Publisher: Emerald
Date: June 2016
Volume: 31
Number: 5
ISSN: 0268-3946
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 22 Jun 2016 07:56
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2017 14:41

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