Customer-related social stressors

Meldung vom Montag, 3. September 2012

Dudenhöffer, S. & Dormann, C. (in press). Customer-related social stressors and service providers’ affective reactions. Journal of Organizational Behavior.

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Journal of orgnaizational behavior

Previous research has shown that customer-related social stressors (CSS) have negative effects on service providers’ long-term well-being. Little is known, however, about short-term and mid-term affective stress reactions and reciprocal effects between service providers' affect and CSS. The aim of this study is to expand extant research (1) by analyzing service providers’ short-term (across a day) and mid-term (across weeks) affective reactions to perceived CSS, (2) by analyzing intraindividual as well as interindividual effects, and (3) by investigating reciprocal effects of affective reactions and CSS that may eventually lead to psychosocial cycles. Our study employed a diary design with three measurement occasions per day over five consecutive days and a two-week panel design using a sample of employees from public service organizations (N = 106). Results showed that CSS elicit changes in service providers’ short-term and mid-term negative affect. We also found support for reversed effects of service providers’ affective reactions on experienced CSS indicating psychosocial cycles between customers and service providers. To prevent escalation, we discuss potential resources.