Boosting customer orientation through coaching: a Canadian study

Claudio Pousa (Faculty of Business Administration, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, Canada)
Anne Mathieu (Department of Marketing, Universite de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada)

International Journal of Bank Marketing

ISSN: 0265-2323

Publication date: 28 January 2014



The purpose of this paper is to investigate to what extent bank manager's coaching, a managerial relationship behavior based on mutual trust, openness and quality of exchanges, affects front-line employee's performance through the mediating effect of salesperson's customer orientation.


The paper conducted a non-experimental, cross-sectional study; a Canadian bank agreed to participate in the study and 122 financial advisors with sales responsibilities answered a web-based survey; data were analyzed using structural equation modelling.


The paper found support for the hypotheses that managerial coaching behavior can help bank employees develop their customer orientation and increase their performance, as well as reduce opportunistic behavior (sales orientation). The paper found that the direct link between coaching and performance, plus the mediating effect of sales orientation and customer orientation (SOCO) can potentially explain a significant variation in employee's performance (r2=0.23). The paper also found that the hypothesized model provided better explanations of the phenomenon when compared with two rival models, one considering SOCO as a full mediator between coaching and performance, and the other one considering only the effect of coaching on performance.


In the banking sector, practitioners and scholars are paying increased attention to the role of trust and relationship behaviors in the development of market orientation and customer relationships. The paper identified a key relationship behavior (customer orientation) and tests its impact as a mediator between a relationship managerial behavior (coaching) and business outcomes (performance) in an international banking setting (Canada).



Pousa, C. and Mathieu, A. (2014), "Boosting customer orientation through coaching: a Canadian study", International Journal of Bank Marketing, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 60-81.

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