Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to identify, portray and analyse the frequent drivers of customer service experiences as described by customers in their own words – the voice of the customer.
Design/methodology/approach – A critical incident technique study was conducted, based on 122 interviews, including 195 favourable and unfavourable narratives, about customer experiences. The data were analysed in an inductive manner and the results are presented by means of extracts from the narratives.
Findings – The findings describe the dimensions of drivers of customers' favourable and unfavourable experiences and the frequent drivers, the social interaction, the core service and the physical context.
Research limitations/implications – Customer experiences are processes and include dynamic interactions and the customer as a co-producer. The study context is limited to the restaurant setting and Swedish customers.
Practical implications – For managers the results suggest that great effort needs to be put into understanding the process of customer experiences and the various interactions involved, especially social interactions and the crucial roles of contact employees and customers involved in these interactions.
Originality/value – The paper provides a detailed description and analysis of the frequent and less frequent drivers of favourable, and unfavourable customer experiences – the constellation of drivers. The findings are illustrated by extracts from customer narratives and show how experiences occur and that experiences are processes occurring in a social and physical environment when people do things together. Furthermore, the paper introduces customer experience to service dominant logic by describing the dynamics of resource interactions in customer experience formation.
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2010. Vol. 20, no 3, 236-258 p.