Writing for MIT Sloan Management Review, Sriram Dasu and Richard B. Chase attempt to answer the question, "How can service organisations make their encounters with customers more positive?"
As the authors observe, customers have complex needs in service environments and emotions are lurking under the surface even in mundane encounters. So the challenge is to make those feelings positive.
Dasu and Chase say: "Organisations often measure the outcomes of service encounters in concrete terms such as on-time flight arrivals or the time to resolve a customer's call. However, the subjective outcomes – the emotions and the feelings – are more difficult to describe. Did the passenger enjoy the flight? Did the customer who called the service centre with a problem hang up feeling better about the provider?"