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The determinants of consumer satisfaction have long intrigued researchers and practitioners alike. Unfortunately, in the case of service businesses and, in particular, the situation of the actual customer service interaction, little information has been amassed. Rather, the bulk of current knowledge focusing on the service transaction has been accumulated in the domain of operational conformance to standards tied to mechanistic service procedures where the performance evidence is substantial. Thus, the nature and attributes of a positive service experience and the role the service person plays in that experience remains, for the most part, a mystery. This article is an attempt to add to the understanding of the service person’s role and its various dimensions relative to the service interaction. In order to bridge the gap between the provider of the service and the consumer of it, the service person’s instrumental role in consummating the transaction will be examined from a conceptual viewpoint adapted from a sociological perspective on role theory and human interaction, The focus of this effort will be in the application of a behavioral viewpoint to the management of service interactions in the context of hospitality businesses.


Required Publisher Statement
© Elsevier. Final version published as: Dev, C. S., & Olsen, M. D. (1989). Applying role theory in developing a framework for the management of customer interactions in hospitality businesses. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 8(1), 19-33. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.