Willing volunteers or unwilling conscripts? Professionals and marketing in service organisations

Laing, Angus and McKee, Lorna (2001). Willing volunteers or unwilling conscripts? Professionals and marketing in service organisations. Journal of Marketing Management, 17(5-6) pp. 559–576.

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Abstract

The concept of the service encounter represents the process of interaction between the consumer and the service provider, which, results in the actual delivery of the service. In this it is the point at which the consumer can evaluate the service offering (John 1996). It is thus as much concerned with marketing as it is with the actual delivery of the service. Central to such marketing activity are those technical staff responsible for the delivery of the service, the so-called part-time marketers (Grönroos 1994). Focusing on the health sector in the United Kingdom, this paper examines the attitudes and behaviours of those professional staff responsible for service delivery towards embracing such a marketing role. The data suggests that although the majority of such staff has considerable reservations about embracing marketing responsibilities, these reservations reflect concerns over professional autonomy and language rather than any deep-seated antipathy towards the core concepts of marketing.

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