Title: Selling shoes through gendered emotional displays

Authors: Celeste M. Brotheridge, Darek Zygadlo

Addresses: Departement d'organisation et ressources humaines, Ecole des sciences de la gestion, Universite du Quebec a Montreal, C.P. 6192, Succ. Centre-Ville, Montreal (QC) H3C 4R2, Canada. ' Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Abstract: This research examines customers| emotion- and purchase-based reactions to gendered emotional displays in a retail setting. In many situations within a retail environment, doing gender may be seen as a performance (Lucal, 1999) offered in order to satisfy customer needs and to leave customers with a favourable impression of the service provided to them. Given the popularity of shows such as |Queer Eye for the Straight Guy| and |Queer as Folk|, a stereotype is emerging in popular culture that gay men have a well-developed fashion sense. In this study, a salesperson adopted a gay persona in an attempt to foster positive customer emotions and maximise sales levels. This study found that customers who were exposed to gendered emotional displays, particularly females, were significantly more satisfied and made more purchases that those who were not exposed to such displays.

Keywords: emotional displays; customer service; gender; retail environment; homosexuality; shoe sales.

DOI: 10.1504/IJWOE.2006.010787

International Journal of Work Organisation and Emotion, 2006 Vol.1 No.3, pp.189 - 203

Published online: 03 Sep 2006 *

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