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Developing an alternative approach to the measurement of B2B relationship health

Stephane Bignoux (La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia)
David Gray (University of Technology Sydney, Sydney, Australia)
Anna Tudehope Booth (La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia)

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics

ISSN: 1355-5855

Article publication date: 15 December 2022

Issue publication date: 2 November 2023




Psychotherapy is often used to treat dysfunctional inter-personal relationships, but it is rarely used to treat dysfunctional B2B relationships. Yet many of the variables found in inter-personal relationships are also found in B2B relationships and both types of relationships have similar fail rates. The authors take a multi-disciplinary approach by adapting an instrument from marriage therapy into a new measure called the Business Relationship Health Index (BRHI). In the process we re-evaluate the drivers of B2B relationships.


The authors apply the Global Assessment of Relational Functioning (GARF) psychiatric system to B2B relationships. The GARF instrument incorporates three components: interaction/problem solving, organization/structure and emotional climate. Using US panel data of 500 B2B relationships based in the USA, the authors use partial least squares analysis and develop a structural equation model to test the validity and reliability of the BRHI with some well-known relationship measures including, satisfaction, trust, commitment and performance.


The findings support a strong link between the BRHI (emotion, interaction and organization) and relationship performance. The proposed measure shows a strong link between BRHI and relationship performance (R2 = 0.54).


The GARF instrument has never been applied to a B2B context. BRHI is a holistic instrument used for assessing the specific relational characteristics of B2B relationships. The BRHI can benefit relationship stakeholders when used as a diagnostic tool to prioritize B2B investment strategies. Managers can use BRHI to determine the extent to which the relationship is healthy or needs repair, re-evaluation, re-commitment, or repositioning.



Bignoux, S., Gray, D. and Booth, A.T. (2023), "Developing an alternative approach to the measurement of B2B relationship health", Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, Vol. 35 No. 8, pp. 2066-2092.



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