n Management Dynamics : Journal of the Southern African Institute for Management Scientists - A managerial framework for relationship management in the business-to-business financial services industry




The purpose of the study was to develop a comprehensive framework that could guide the management of financial services relationships within a business-to-business (B2B) context. Trust, commitment and intention to stay are proposed as key dimensions. A survey was used to empirically assess the 13 hypothesised relationships in the model. Two samples were drawn: a relationship manager sample and a client sample, both from a leading South African B2B financial services provider. Data from the relationship manager sample were analysed using a regression analysis, while data from the client sample were analysed using structural equation modelling (SEM).

Although relationship management is a complex process, relationship managers and clients agreed on the impact of the majority of the dimensions on their intentions to stay in the relationship. It is especially interesting to note that relationship managers believe that it is possible to build commitment without the presence of trust. Relationship managers appear to over-estimate their ratings of clients' perceptions, and marketers should be cautious to base marketing strategies on the perceptions of relationship managers only. The originality of the contribution lies in the concurrent consideration of the perceptions of both financial services providers and their clients.


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