Complaint, Patience, and Neglect: Responses to a Dissatisfying Service Experience

Heejung Ro, University of Central Florida


This study examines the responses of complainers and non-complainers after a service failure in the auto repair and medical service contexts. In particular, this study focuses on differentiating the two types of dissatisfaction responses of non-complainers, patience and neglect, from complaint. The results, based on a survey of 230 respondents, indicate that attitudes toward complaining and emotional bonding differentiate neglect from complaint, and the criticality of the service failure differentiates patience from complaint. The findings suggest that patience customers have higher return intentions than neglect customers, and as high as those of complainers with satisfying service recoveries