Service Customization through Dramaturgy

Posted: 18 Aug 2009

See all articles by Ian P. McCarthy

Ian P. McCarthy

Simon Fraser University (SFU) - Beedie School of Business

Leyland Pitt

Simon Fraser University - Segal Graduate School of Business

Pierre R. Berthon

Bentley University

Date Written: August 5, 2009

Abstract

The customization of a service often depends on the “performance” delivered by front-stage service employees. Drawing on the theory of dramaturgy and service marketing, we present a typology identifying four distinct and viable configurations for achieving different types of service customization. We explain how variations in the time pressure to customize a service and the degree of customization required, combine to determine the characteristics and fit of each configuration. With service organizations increasingly operating on a global basis, we discuss the fit between the preferences of different multicultural segments, the operational characteristics of a configuration and the level of customization offered.

Keywords: Service operations, customization, typology, configurations, dramaturgy, scripts, improvisation

JEL Classification: M10, M11

Suggested Citation

McCarthy, Ian P. and Pitt, Leyland and Berthon, Pierre R., Service Customization through Dramaturgy (August 5, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1444180

Ian P. McCarthy (Contact Author)

Simon Fraser University (SFU) - Beedie School of Business ( email )

8888 University Drive
Burnaby, British Columbia V5A 1S6
Canada

Leyland Pitt

Simon Fraser University - Segal Graduate School of Business ( email )

8888 University Drive
Burnaby, British Columbia V5A 1S6
Canada

Pierre R. Berthon

Bentley University ( email )

175 Forest Street
Waltham, MA 02145
United States

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