n Management Dynamics : Journal of the Southern African Institute for Management Scientists - The internal and external customer orientation of small- to medium-sized textile retailers
|Article Title||The internal and external customer orientation of small- to medium-sized textile retailers|
|© Publisher:||Southern African Institute for Management Scientists (SAIMS)|
|Journal||Management Dynamics : Journal of the Southern African Institute for Management Scientists|
|Author||T.F.J. Steyn, S.M. Ellis and F.A.A. Musika|
|Publication Date||Jan 2004|
|Pages||34 - 42|
Developing an internal and external customer orientation will facilitate the implementation of relationship marketing principles by businesses. Relationship marketing highlights the need for an external customer orientation, which in turn raises the need for customer oriented employees. Employees will, however, only be customer-oriented if an internal customer orientation is evident in the business.
Four constructs pertaining to the internal customer orientation of small- to medium-sized textile retailers in the North-West Province were identified. After assessing the internal consistency, effect sizes were determined for these constructs, analysing the practical significance of the opinion of employees as opposed to that of management on the underlying customer orientation constructs. Similarly, four constructs referring to the external customer orientation of the same businesses were identified. The four identified constructs underpinning an external customer orientation were also checked for internal consistency, and the practical significance of the opinion of customers as opposed to that of management on the underlying constructs was determined through effect sizes. It was found that the identified businesses lack both an internal and an external customer orientation.
Recommendations are made to improve internal customer orientation for the sake of an improved external customer orientation. An improved external customer orientation will facilitate implementation of relationship-marketing principles in these businesses.
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