Discrete Negative Emotions and Customer Dissatisfaction Responses in a Casual Restaurant Setting

Anna S. Mattila, Heejung Ro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

155 Scopus citations


The primary purpose of this study is to investigate customers' emotional responses following a service failure in a restaurant setting. Specifically, this study investigates how specific emotions (anger, disappointment or regret, worry) influence consumers' behavioral intentions. To gain a richer understanding of consumers' coping behaviors, the authors examine customers' locus of failure attributions. By using a 3 × 2 factorial between-subjects design, three attribution types (internal, external, and control condition) are matched with two service recovery outcomes (positive and negative). Findings suggest that customers with feelings of anger and disappointment or regret are likely to engage in various dissatisfaction responses (e.g., direct complaining, negative word-of-mouth, and switching), whereas worried customers are not. Attributing the failure to internal or external causes reduce switching and negative word-of-mouth intentions. Finally, the study results indicate that feelings of anger spill over to postrecovery satisfaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-107
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Hospitality and Tourism Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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