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Abstract

This study fills an important gap in the literature by developing a conceptual model that links salesperson empathy and listening skills to three outcome variables. Responses from a mail survey of 162 buyers from a variety of business organizations were used to test this model using structural equation modeling. The model has an excellent fit (χ 2 = 1.511, GFI = 0.99, AGFI = 0.94), and indicates a strong positive relationship between empathy and the following: salesperson listening, trust in the salesperson, and satisfaction with the salesperson. Also, listening is positively related to buyer's trust in and satisfaction with the salesperson, but not with future interaction expectations. Trust in and satisfaction with the salesperson were positively related to future interaction expectations.
... Communication is a huge part in the marketing world, being able to be empathetic and to listen well. Communication also creates a positive sales outcome while the other was fulfilled by not just the product but also the service provided by sales associates (Aggarwal, 2015). It was pointed out that communication skills of sales associates are a clear factor on impacting customers purchase behaviors and as well as how they perceive sellers and organization customers (Missaoui, 2015). ...
... It was pointed out that communication skills of sales associates are a clear factor on impacting customers purchase behaviors and as well as how they perceive sellers and organization customers (Missaoui, 2015). But talking isn't just the way to influence consumer's decisionmaking (Holland, 2016) and as such, successfully managing the customer behavior, sales associates must have solid communication skills, as well as good appearance, and attitude (Aggarwal, 2015). Sales associates must attain their customers' intention, be proactive and close deals which essentially require non-verbal communication skills with the help of verbal communication (Morwitz, 2012). ...
... For H1, the results indicate that the Sales Associates' communication skills do not influence consumer purchase intention. The result strongly contradicts to the findings of Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour, & Shepherd (2015) which suggests that communication skills will always be a huge part in the sales market, thus being able to interact well verbally could create a positive impact on the consumers and produce a satisfactory relationship between seller and buyer. Moreover, Morwitz (2012) accentuates the importance of both verbal and non-verbal communications skills of Sales Associates to persuade customers. ...
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There are several aspects in a transaction setting affecting the thought and decision-making process of a consumer. One factor that is essential to consider are the sales associates. However, insufficient research has been done to fully explain the role that sales associates play in terms of consumer purchase intentions. Previous studies focused more on external factors, including advertisements and new platforms. This research primarily aims to identify how sales associates’ communication skills, physical appearance, and attitude impact consumer purchase intention. Descriptive-correlational research design was used to analyze the data gathered from 200 respondents. Specifically, ANOVA and regression were utilized to analyze the data and test the relationship of variables. The study revealed that sales associates have insignificant impact on consumer’s purchase intentions. Furthermore, the findings implied that consumers purchase intention are not dependent on the sales associates’ good communication skills, attractive appearance, and good attitude. The results will be useful to business owners, managers, and HR practitioners to investigate other facets of Sales Associates persona that can influence consumer journey.
... This study examines it from interpersonal trust perspective, effectively referring to customers' trust in frontline service employees. Based on this understanding, it is evident that empathy does significantly contribute to the development of trust since the beginning of a relationship between a service provider and customer (Aggarwal et al. 2005). Interestingly, even trust dimensions (i.e. ...
... Also, based on some of our earlier discussions, there is a significant role of empathy in influencing the development and preservation of trust (Aggarwal et al. 2005). Empathy either in the form of perspective-taking intellectually or emotionally facilitates seamless exchange of information between a bank's employee and a customer, resulting in uncertainty reduction, which in turn leads to greater trust at both affective and cognitive trust levels (Aggarwal et al. 2005;Kwon and Sub 2004). ...
... Also, based on some of our earlier discussions, there is a significant role of empathy in influencing the development and preservation of trust (Aggarwal et al. 2005). Empathy either in the form of perspective-taking intellectually or emotionally facilitates seamless exchange of information between a bank's employee and a customer, resulting in uncertainty reduction, which in turn leads to greater trust at both affective and cognitive trust levels (Aggarwal et al. 2005;Kwon and Sub 2004). Importantly, during initial service encounters itself, customers' affective and cognitive trust development starts based on verbal or nonverbal cues of an empathetic employee (Liu and Wu 2009). ...
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Despite the relevance of empathy in banking services, very few studies in literature have investigated the multidimensional nature of both cognitive and affective empathy, especially from the perspective of the stage-model theory. In fact, literature that is available has been stymied with conflicting findings about the influence of empathy on relational outcomes. This study aims to examine the mediation effects of trust in between the relationship of both perceived cognitive and affective empathy and intention to continue relationship in customers of Indian banks. Additionally, it explores the relationship of customers’ perceived empathy on customers’ intention to continue through customer orientation. Using structural equation modeling (SEM), we conducted a mediation analysis on a sample of 334 buyers. Largely, the results confirmed that trust does have a mediating role on both perceived cognitive and affective empathy and perceived customer orientation, due to which, customers intend to continue their relationship. Holistically, the findings highlight the importance of multidimensional perceived empathy, trust, and customer orientation within the Indian banking sector.
... Personality traits of frontline service salespersons can assist in building trust and satisfaction during the service interaction with the adoption of emotional component (Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour, & Shepherd, 2005). Possession of certain personality traits makes one more appeal to the customers. ...
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Non-landing scenic flights emerged as a new phenomenon in the airport retailing to ease the stress of tourists. This paper aims to build a model of the linkage among servicescape, perception-attitude, and behavioral intention toward the airport retailing industry. The moderating effects of shopping flow and perceived enjoyment on a flow behavior are also examined. An online survey through a research company is selected to collect Korean customers and analyzed by SEM. Results are expected to shed light on the relationship between revisit intention to stores and purchase intention on related services and the moderation of shopping flow and perceived enjoyment on behavior flow.
... In the present study, we focus on three social behaviors (engaging in personal conversation, listening, and display of warmth), which have been examined for human employees in service-related studies as antecedents of outcomes such as rapport, trust, liking of a person, and customer satisfaction (e.g., Aggarwal et al. 2005;Fiske, Cuddy, and Glick 2007;Söderlund and Berg 2020). Here, in the present study, however, the main thesis is that these behaviors -when carried out by a VA -are likely to enhance perceived VA effort. ...
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Virtual agents (VAs) are used increasingly as representatives of the firm in retail and service settings-particularly in online environments. Existing studies indicate that the customer's experience is enhanced if VAs resemble humans, which seems to imply that what has been learned over the years in research about the influence of the human employee's behavior on customer satisfaction may be applicable also to VA behavior. This study explores one factor, effort, which has a positive impact on customer satisfaction when it characterizes the human employee in service encounters. Although a VA (i.e., a computer program) cannot experience effort, it was assumed that human sensitivity to other humans' effort, and a tendency to anthropomorphize non-human agents, would make human customers susceptible to effort-expending signals when they interact with a VA. To examine this assumption, data were collected from customers who had been interacting with existing VAs. The results indicate that three specific behaviors (engaging in personal conversation, listening, and display of warmth) boost the customer's perceptions of VA effort, and that perceived VA effort has a positive impact on customer satisfaction.
... Employees are increasingly central in these internal and external networks as they initiate and improve these relationships through their communicative behaviors (Ledingham, 2003;Mendoza et al., 2007). Employees can thus instill trust, bridge gaps between organizations and their environment, and develop lasting relations (Korschun, 2015) by listening to external stakeholders (Aggarwal et al., 2005), sharing information with them, or engaging in informal communication. Communication behaviors aimed at relationship-building include social bonding tactics (Wang et al., 2006). ...
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Several scholars have pointed out the importance of employees' strategic communication behaviors for organizational performance and employee wellbeing. Employees contribute to organizations by acting as brand ambassadors , boundary spanners and crisis communicators. Employees play such roles on top of assigned job tasks, which can lead to role overload, role conflicts and job stress. The analysis of employees' communication role enactment is hampered by the lack of a framework describing the complete range of active communication roles that employees are expected to play in the workplace. This article introduces the Active Employee Communication Roles Framework (AECR Framework), develops the conceptualization of eight communication roles, and discusses implications for strategic communication. The first four roles-the embodier, promotor, defender, and relationship builder role-describe ambassador roles. In addition, employees play the roles of scout, sensemaker, innovator, and critic to contribute to organizational development. The AECR framework provides a new lens which aids our understanding of the relationship between communication, and employee performance and wellbeing, and provides employees and employers a tool to analyze and calibrate mutual expectations regarding communication behaviors. The framework can also help employees to more strategically allocate resources when executing the various communication roles. This may help to alleviate employee role stress, and create healthier workplaces.
... In the effect, such compliments may generate for compulsive buyers and hedonists more purchasing traps than real benefits. In a similar way, a salesperson<apos;>s empathy and attentive listening is positively related to buyer<apos;>s trust and satisfaction with the service that is provided in store (see Aggarwal et al., 2005). Such interpersonal factors however often lead to situations where the source of the delightful experience is attributable to the actions of a salesperson. ...
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Although consumer and marketing research has focused on identifying various precursors of compulsive buying behavior, little attention has been paid to more complex relationships examined from the perspective of hedonism as a personal value, hedonic shopping experiences, and consumer demographics. Thus, the present study postulates a mediation model in which the extent of hedonism postulates relationship to compulsive buying via hedonistic shopping experiences is diagnosed, and proceeds to moderation effects based on consumer demographic characteristics (i. e gender, age, education). Using data (N = 1,245) from a representative survey, and based on structural equation modeling, results revealed that hedonism significantly influences compulsive buying via hedonistic shopping experiences, while moderation effects indicated that these relationships were stronger in younger individuals, mostly women. In contrast, these effects were non-significant with regard to consumers' education level. The study findings are discussed in terms of the theoretical and practical insights to better understand and prevent contemporary consumerism trends related to hedonism, hedonistic shopping, and compulsive buying tendencies.
... Personality traits of frontline service salespersons can assist in building trust and satisfaction during the service interaction with the adoption of emotional component (Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour, & Shepherd, 2005). Possession of certain personality traits makes one more appeal to the customers. ...
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The significant increase in global food wastage has led to unfavourable environmental impacts. It had been pointed out that Malaysians wasted an estimate of 16,668 tonnes of edible food daily which increased food waste issues. The current paper applies quantitative research to determine the predictors that influence food waste behaviour among university students in Malaysia. This research hopes to provide additional insight to the existing literature linking to food waste, gender, consumer value, food-related habits and environmental awareness in hope that the outcome can add value to the literature and provide practical implications for government and foodservice sectors.
... Personality traits of frontline service salespersons can assist in building trust and satisfaction during the service interaction with the adoption of emotional component (Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour, & Shepherd, 2005). Possession of certain personality traits makes one more appeal to the customers. ...
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Chapter
This chapter explores some spectrum of call center talk. There is a major claim confronting the positive use of empathy. It is because an important aspect of business transactions in call center is neither showing the agent’s emotions nor assuming the customer’s feelings. In most formal business and/or professional communication, the agent’s feelings should be omitted. The agent is generally not concerned about the customer’s feelings or emotions but the situation from his/her point of view. He or she explains the situation objectively without sharing the customer’s feelings. The transactional communication suggests that the agent should make and support reasonable arguments using claims and evidence to achieve business goals and to a lesser extent build personal credibility, appeal to organizational credibility, or appeal to the emotion of the audience (Jung 2017). The other way around, not all customers may seek or need empathy. Some may want to avoid it completely, preferring an objective answer. However, cases introduced in this chapter illustrate that empathy communication may be necessary or appropriate and play a selective but highly significant role in customer calls. It is because the emotional “audience person” tends to be a untactful and inappreciative listener, becoming passive and discouraged in their performances in a response to non-empathic actor (i.e., empathyless agent) exclusively in the position of avoidance of his or her organization’s wrongdoing, thereby not providing an accepting and generally not rewarding context for interaction. Resolution to complaint in call center seems taking time from the macro-issue of speech (i.e., mostly ending position in standard steps of call center talk). Agents consciously or subconsciously save resolution toward the end of conversation (all examples of this chapter). This finding supports the claim that cognitive empathic responses for finding the customer’s future solutions do take time.
Virtual agents (VAs) are used increasingly as representatives of the firm in retail and service settings – particularly in online environments. Existing studies indicate that the customer’s experience is enhanced if VAs resemble humans, which seems to imply that what has been learned over the years in research about the influence of the human employee’s behavior on customer satisfaction may be applicable also to VA behavior. This study explores one factor, effort, which has a positive impact on customer satisfaction when it characterizes the human employee in service encounters. Although a VA (i.e., a computer program) cannot experience effort, it was assumed that human sensitivity to other humans’ effort, and a tendency to anthropomorphize non-human agents, would make human customers susceptible to effort-expending signals when they interact with a VA. To examine this assumption, data were collected from customers who had been interacting with existing VAs. The results indicate that three specific behaviors (engaging in personal conversation, listening, and display of warmth) boost the customer’s perceptions of VA effort, and that perceived VA effort has a positive impact on customer satisfaction.
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The purpose of this research was to develop and validate a measure of the degree to which salespeople practice effective listening. After defming and discussing the construct, the development of a paper-and-pencil self-report measure of interpersonal listening in the personal selling context (lLPS) is described. Following the procedure used by Spiro and Weitz (1990), the validity of the measure was assessed via a mail questionnaire with a sample of 604 salespeople from a variety of firms and industries. Both performance and sales experience were significantly correlated with the ILPS scale. There were no significant relationships between ILPS and gender, age, or industry type. The 14-item ILPS scale that emerged from the purification process was shown to have acceptable reliability estimates, as well as evidence of face, convergent, and nomological validity. Managerial implications and directions for future research are presented.
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