|Title:||Exploring the impact of service climate and personal cultural orientations on internal service quality and employee performance : an empirical study|
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
|Department:||Faculty of Business|
|Pages:||ix, 132 pages : color illustrations ; 30 cm|
|Abstract:||Prior research on 'Service-Profit Chain' suggests that 'Internal Service Quality' has a direct impact on employees' satisfaction, which in turn affects their productivity (Heskett et al. 1994). Others argue that 'Service Climate' is crucial for the success of service businesses (Schneider et al. 1998). However, there is hardly any research that examines the joint impact of internal service quality and service climate on employee performance. Moreover, despite recent trend towards greater internationalization of the operations of most multi-national firms, there is no research exploring the impact of cultural factors such as organization culture or personal cultural orientations, on the relationships amongst internal service quality, service climate and employee performance.This research addresses both the above research gaps. First, it reviews prior research in services marketing and organization behaviour areas, to develop a new conceptual model incorporating the relationships amongst internal service quality, service climate, personal cultural orientations and employee performance. Next, four set of hypotheses are developed about the relationships of these constructs with each other. Finally, a survey-based methodology is used to test all the hypotheses using data collected from employees working in different branch offices of a large international construction conglomerate across different parts of the world.|
It is envisaged that the findings of this research will enrich our understanding about the impact of service climate on internal service quality and employee performance. This is an important conceptual contribution because it will help resolve the confusion reported in prior research about the role of internal service quality plays between service climate and employee performance. Specifically, this research will show that service climate is an important antecedent to internal service quality, which in turn affects employee performance directly, thus internal service quality is a mediator rather than a moderator. More importantly, it will also be shown that independent and interdependent personal cultural orientations may moderate these relationships. Besides its conceptual contribution in clarifying the mediating versus moderating role of internal service quality, this research also has many important managerial implications. First, the findings of this research will help managers to understand the moderating effect of individual employees' personal cultural orientations (independence vs. interdependence) on the relationship between service climate and internal service quality as well as the influence of internal service quality on employee performance. Second, this research would highlight that managers should not merely focus on the objective criteria such as age, education, gender, work experience etc. while selecting new employees, but also look at the subjective criteria such as the level of individual employees'efforts to understand the cultural differences between them and their co-workers. Such knowledge and understanding would allow them to work more effectively and efficiently, especially in large-scale construction projects with multi-national teams consisting of employees with widely varying personal cultural orientations.
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