Content By Thomas Pyzdek

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By Thomas Pyzdek

There is much confusion about the constructs of quality and customer satisfaction (Q/CS). “Quality is doing the right things right,” say some experts, but how can we be assured that a service provider is doing the right things? Here’s an example: “I recognize that the opera singer has a tremendous vocal range [high quality], but I hate opera [dissatisfaction].” In other words, if service providers are interested in quality as a means of achieving customer satisfaction, the cognitive model of quality is inadequate. In essence, a service provider can achieve quality by doing things right whether the things that they do are right or wrong in terms of customer satisfaction. Although it’s true that the cognitive formulation of Q/CS may result in orthogonal (or at least different) constructs that are easier for researchers to work with, the value of quality so defined appears suspect.

An alternative way of defining the Q/CS constructs would be to ask the consumer to make the following judgments:

1. Did the provider do what you wanted it to do?

2. When the provider did what you wanted, did it do it well?

3. How do you feel about the value you received from the service?