The Role of Emotions in Service Encounters

Anna S. Mattila, Cathy A. Enz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

560 Scopus citations


This article advances our understanding of the influence of affect in consumers’ responses to brief, nonpersonal service encounters. This study contributes to the services marketing literature by examining for mundane service transactions the impact of customer-displayed emotion and affect on assessments of the service encounter and the overall experience. Observational and perceptual data from customers were matched with frontline employees in 200 transaction-specific encounters. The results of this study suggest that consumers’ evaluations of the service encounter correlate highly with their displayed emotions during the interaction and postencounter mood states. Finally, the findings indicate that frontline employees’perceptions of the encounter are not aligned with those of their customers. The managerial implications of these findings are briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-277
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Service Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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