The the findings of the study and the

The
rationale of this essay is to provide a critical review of the academic journal
article titled, ‘Do your internal branding efforts measure up?: Consumers’
response to brand supporting behaviours of hospitality employees? by Erkmen and
Hancer (2015). After the introduction, there are four main items that will be
addressed throughout this review, in greater detail. The first item that will
be covered is the rational of the article, where the article’s core purpose and
aims will be addressed. This item is followed by an explanation of what the authors
do in order to answer any questions or address the issues that their study
raised. This is then followed by an evaluation of the findings of the study and
the contributions made to the academic community and other interested parties.
The last item to be addressed will be the strengths and weaknesses of the article,
which will be followed by a conclusion highlighting the key points of the
essay, with a brief reflection on what has been learnt from this particular
article during the process of producing this critical review.

According to Erkmen and Hancer (2015: 878) the purpose of the study was to
properly “understand how brand citizenship behaviours of hospitality from the
employee, effects a customers’ relation with a company and its brand”. This is
premised on the argument that customers create their own
positive or negative impressions of a company and its relations with its brand
through their own personal interactions with the employee (Wyld, 2015).
Alongside the main purpose of Erkmens and Hancers (2015) model, the core questions
and issues is to whether “there is a link between the employee behaviours to
the customer evaluation of the brands performance, brand trust and brand
commitment?” (Erkmen and Hancer, 2015:878). While discussing their research’s
implications, Erkmens and Hancers is given reason to think that the results
this study and article may be of interest to the owners of hospitality organisations
because it could help them to improve the brand supporting behaviours of their
employees to secure, “long-term relationships not only with customers but also
with employees in a labour-intensive and high customer industry” (Erkmen and
Hancer, 2015:878). In regard to discovering any gaps in the existing
literature, previous researchers have combined “three bodies of literature
(corporate, internal and employer branding)” (Foster et al.,2010:401), in order to
understand the correlation between the employee’s behaviours and brand
performance from the perspective of mangers and
the employees but the not the customers. Therefore, this
allowed Erkmen and Hancer (2015) to fill the literature gap, within their academic
journal article gap by focusing on the consumers and how
their evaluation of the brands performance is affected by employees brand
behaviours. The biases of the complete academic journal article, is the Erkmens
and Hancers (2015) assumptions that the hospitality behaviours of employees do
have an impact on consumers perceptions and relations with the brand.

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For Erkmens and Hancers (2015) to
address and answer their assumptions, they carried out extensive research on
the employees and customers of corporate Turkish Airline Company.  The research method that Erkmens and Hancers
(2015) used was a survey. This survey method was appropriate for the authors’
research, as it is a form of primary research which provided a higher level of
reliability within the results. This research method was also appropriate for
Erkmens and Hancers (2015) research because it can provide consistent
quantitative descriptions (“data that is in the form of numbers” (Punch, 1998:4)
of attitudes or opinions of a large population (Creswell, 2009:147); as opposed to other research methods (i.e. Interviews or
observations) that would that would provide qualitative data (‘data that is not
in the form of numbers” (Punch, 1998:4), which would make the data harder to
analysis from large-scale data sets according to Carr (1994).
Two different surveys were distributed out to the customer contact employees
(flight attendants), who were asked to choose two customers (airline
passengers) on the flight to also distribute the surveys to. In total, 523
responses from flight attendants and 1,046 responses from the selected airline
passengers, were collected from the survey and used to analysis. The data that
was collected form the surveys was analysed together in a proposed conceptual
model, with the use of data aggregation within the model. Sekaran and Bougie
(2010) defines a conceptual model is a schematic diagram that provides a visual
description of theorized relationships between concepts or
ideas within the model. Alongside this, Erkmen and Hancer (2015:884) collected “previous
measurement scales from existing scales” exploring reliability and validity, to
be measured and compared against the main contrast of the study (e.g. brand
citizenship behaviours and customer brand performance) and the data collected
from the survey. By Erkmen and Hancer (2015) using existing scales strengthens
their study and results because it allowed them to “verify the findings of
their study and to build on the work of others” (Sekaran and Bougie, 2010: 131).
At the beginning of Erkmens and Hancers (2015) research, theoretical
discussions and set of hypotheses were proposed and put into a hypothesized
conceptual model, to ‘illustrate how employees brand citizenship behaviours
influence consumers’ perception of brand performance as well as their relation
development with the brand” (Erkmen and Hancer, 2015:883). As a form of
preliminary analysis, Erkmen and Hancer (2015) used confirmatory factor
analysis (CFA) and structural equation modelling (SEM), to analysis the
hypothesized conceptual. A confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) “is a statistical
technique used to verify the factor structure of a set of observed variables”
(Suhr, 2016a:1). A structural equation modelling (SEM) is “a methodology for
representing, estimating, and testing a network of relationships between
variables (measured variables and latent constructs)” (Suhr, 2006b). Erkmens
and Hancers (2015) use of preliminary analysis was advantage their study, as it
allowed the authors to analysis the relationship and correlation between brand
citizenship behaviours, brand performance and customers relation with the
brand, in great depth. 

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