The information below is from the October 2018 Compete Through Service Symposium. Mark your calendars for our next program, April 1-3, 2020!

ServiceThinkTank Overview

An added element that gets to the heart of the true meaning of a symposium for this year’s program is what we are calling a “ServiceThinkTank”, an event that was previously an invitation-only event for the CSL board and faculty network. The session will focus on dialogue, networking, and bringing in more ideas from academia and other thought leaders, adding a new and vibrant dynamic to the program.

Friday, October 26, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Keynote: The Story Behind Wall Street Journal’s Management Top 250

Lawrence A. Crosby, Ph.D.
Chief Data Scientist
KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society, a part of the Drucker Institute at Claremont Graduate University

The Drucker Corporate Rankings form the basis of the Management Top 250 list in the Wall Street Journal.  The Drucker Institute developed this holistic company ranking based on the principles of its founder Peter F. Drucker, using data from a wide range of providers.  The rankings integrate five dimensions of corporate performance: Customer Satisfaction, Employee Engagement and Development, Innovation, Social Responsibility and Financial Strength.  The presentation will cover the inspiration for the project, its conceptual and data science underpinnings, key results from 2017, managerial learnings, interdisciplinary work underway, and enhancements to the 2018 rankings due out in December

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Service Research Lightning Talks – Faculty Presenters

Ruth Bolton

Ruth Bolton
Professor of Marketing
W. P. Carey School of Business Arizona State University

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Ruth N. Bolton is Professor of Marketing at the W.P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University. She is the author of Service Excellence: Creating Customer Experiences that Build Relationships. She is also the recipient of the 2016 American Marketing Association / Irwin / McGraw-Hill Distinguished Marketing Educator Award and the 2007 recipient of the Christopher Lovelock Career Contributions to Services Award. Both awards are given to only a select few marketing academics; they recognize distinguished service and sustained outstanding contributions to the field of marketing.

She previously served as 2009-11 Executive Director of the Marketing Science Institute. Dr. Bolton studies how organizations can improve business performance over time by creating, maintaining and enhancing relationships with customers. Her recent research has focused on the customer experience, multi-channel management and high technology, interactive services sold in global business-to-business markets. She previously held academic positions at Vanderbilt University, the University of Oklahoma, Harvard University, University of Maryland, and the University of Alberta. She also spent eight years with Verizon, working on projects in the telecommunications and information services industries. Dr. Bolton’s earlier published articles investigate how organizations’ service and pricing strategies influence customer satisfaction, loyalty and revenues. She has extensive experience with survey research design, as well as the econometric analysis of large-scale, integrative data bases. Her research is typically conducted in partnership with businesses, such as the Marriott Corporation, Hewlett-Packard and Schneider National Inc. She has also participated in executive education programs around the world.

Dr. Bolton has published articles in the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Service Research, Management Science, Marketing Science, and other leading journals. She previously served as editor of the Journal of Marketing (2002-2005) and Area Editor of theJournal of Marketing Research (2005-2007), as well as serving on the Editorial Review Boards of other leading marketing journals. She has also served on the Board of Trustees of the Marketing Science Institute and the Board of Directors of the American Marketing Association. She received her B.Comm., with honors, from Queen’s University (Canada), and her M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Carnegie-Mellon University.

Thomas Choi

Thomas Choi
Professor of Supply Chain Management
W. P. Carey Chair of Supply Chain Management
Arizona State University
Director, Center for Supply Networks (CaSN)

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Tom received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and his A.B. from University of California, Berkeley. He is Professor of Supply Chain Management and Harold E. Fearon Chair of Purchasing Management at W. P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University. He is also Executive Director of CAPS Research and Director of Center for Supply Networks (CaSN).

His research focuses on the upstream side of supply chain management including services outsourcing. His research areas are: supply networks as a complex adaptive system, social network analysis of supply networks, service outsourcing triads, non-linear buyer-supplier relationships, supply base management, supplier-supplier relationships, supply chain disintermediation, structural embeddedness in supply networks, and multi-tier supply chain management.

Tom’s recent industry projects have been in cloud-based services outsourcing, nexus supplier index, and supply chain financing through CAPS Research.


Mark Houston
Professor of Marketing
Eunice and James L. West Chair in Marketing
Neeley School of Business
Texas Christian University

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Mark B. Houston (Ph.D. Arizona State, MBA University of Missouri, B.S. Southwest Baptist University) is Department Head, Professor of Marketing, and Foreman R. and Ruby S. Bennett Chair in Business Administration at Texas A&M University. Mark is also affiliated with Arizona State University’s Center for Services Leadership and the University of Münster (Germany). His research on channels, movies, and innovation strategy has been published in Marketing Science, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Research, and Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, among others. He is Associate Editor of Journal of Service Research and of Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. Mark has served as President of the AMA Academic Council (2012-2013), and has co-chaired the AMA Summer Educators’ Conference (2005) and the AMA/Sheth Foundation Doctoral Consortium (2010). He has received teaching awards at the national (Academy of Marketing Science), university (University of Missouri), and college levels (TCU’s Neeley School of Business; Saint Louis University’s Cook School of Business). He has conducted research, consulting, and/or exec education activities with many firms, including AT&T, Caterpillar, Dell, IBM, INGAA,, and WellPoint. Prior to joining Texas A&M in 2014, Mark served on the faculties of TCU, University of Missouri, Saint Louis University, and Bowling Green State University.


Linda Price

Linda Price
Philip H. Knight Chair
Professor of Marketing
Department of Marketing
Lindquist College of Business
University of Oregon

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Linda L. Price (BA, MBA University of Wyoming, Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin) is the Underwood Family Professor of Marketing in the Eller College of Management, University of Arizona. Linda has received many marketing honors and awards including the 2013 College of Business Distinguished Alumni Award from University of Wyoming and the 2013 Academy of Marketing Science Cutco/Vector Distinguished Educator Award for Lifetime Contributions to Marketing Scholarship. She currently serves as Immediate Past President of the Association for Consumer Research as well as serving on the American Marketing Association Academic Council, the Board of Governors for Academy of Marketing Science and on the Advisory Board for the Journal of Consumer Research. Linda’s theory and research is published in leading marketing and social science journals including Journal of Marketing, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science and Journal of Consumer Research, and combines qualitative and quantitative methodologies often in service contexts to examine consumer identity and adaptation, social influence and network interactions, and how consumers’ emotions and imaginations enrich, distinguish and give agency to their lives. Her research has been and is currently funded by a variety of agencies including USDA, and Marketing Science Institute. She has published books, chapters and over 70 articles that have collectively garnered over 7,000 citations. She has mentored many PhD students who are now leading marketing scholars in Universities around the world.

Clay Voorhees

Nudging Service Consumers to Stronger Relationships and Increased Spending
Clay Voorhees
Professor of Marketing and Morris Mayer Endowed Chair
Department of Marketing
The University of Alabama

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Roundtable Sessions

Part of the Symposium experience will be what we are calling a “Roundtable Event”. The purpose is to create a format that allows for more opportunity for discourse around research ideas and business best practices, and for our attendees to find and connect with people who share similar research and business interests.  The format will consist of three 20 minute sessions for a total of 60 minutes of discussion time. Roundtable leaders will present on their particular research idea or business best practice. Attendees will choose which tables they would like to participate in, and rotate after each session is over. This session is designed to provide a fast paced and highly interactive session where many takeaways will be gained over a 60 minute period.

Confirmed Roundtable Leaders
(Some Presentation Titles To Be Determined, Coming Soon)

Hidden Costs of Poor Service Quality
Leonard Berry
Distinguished Professor and Regents Professor
M. B. Zale Chair in Retailing and Marketing Leadership

Predicting and Designing the Services Your Customers Want
Salvador Lee Bravo
Senior Experience Design Strategist
Cast and Hue

AI Challenges in Customer Service
George Colliat
Professor of Practice, School of Computing, Informatics, and Decision Systems Engineering
Arizona State University

Deeper Dive: The Story Behind Wall Street Journal’s Management Top 250
Lawrence Crosby
Chief Data Scientist
KH Moon Center for a Functioning Society, a Part of the Drucker Institute at
Claremont Graduate University

Strategies for Soliciting Customer Feedback at Each Touchpoint Along the Customer Journey
Evan Klein
Founder and President
Satrix Solutions

Boosting Customer Satisfaction with a Twist: How to Design an Effective Customer Satisfaction Strategy with a Budget Constraint
Mei Li
Assistant Professor
Department of Supply Chain Management
Eli Broad School of Business
Michigan State University

Driving Marketing Analytics from the Top: Perspectives on Marketing Analytics Implementation
Gary L. Lilien
Distinguished Research Professor of Management Science, Penn State
Distinguished Professor of Marketing, University of Technology, Sydney
Founder and Research Director, Institute for the Study of Business Markets

AI for Customer Service – Lowing Entry Barriers
Gabriele “G” Masilli
CTO Customer Service & Support

Foundational Career and Service Skills Training, Online for Free
Brian Nethero
EdPlus at ASU – Edge

Leading the Flock: Managing the Challenges of the Customer Co-creation of Services
Charles Noble
Professor and Associate Dean 
University of Tennessee

Field A/B Testing of the Impact of Technology in Service Encounters
Andrea Ordanini
BNP Paribas Professor of Marketing and Analytics
Bocconi University

Less is Not More: How to Encourage Consumers to Upgrade their Experiences
Adriana Samper
Associate Professor of Marketing
W. P. Carey School of Business
Arizona State University

What Customers Mean When They Talk about Service Authenticity
Nancy Sirianni
Culverhouse College of Commerce University of Alabama
Jones Endowed Chair of Services Marketing and Associate Professor of Marketing

The Role of the Brand in the Customer Experience: Does the Brand Promise Matter?
Crina Tarasi
Associate Professor of Marketing
Central Michigan University

Factors Promoting Upgrading
Michael Wiles
Associate Professor of Marketing &
Faculty Director for Research, Center for Services Leadership
W. P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University


Dr. Clay Voorhees is an Associate Professor of Marketing at Michigan State University. He received his Ph.D. from Florida State University in 2006. His research has been published or is forthcoming in the Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Strategic Management Journal, Journal of the Academy of Science, Journal of Retailing, Journal of Service Research, among others. Clay’s research focuses on the explanation and management of the dynamics of social exchange and social influence. Within this theoretical umbrella, he focuses on projects related to customer experience management and loyalty, often in service contexts with a focus on frontline interactions. In 2015, Clay received the Emerging Service Scholar award from the American Marketing Association. In addition, his research has received the 2011, 2012, and 2015 Industry Relevance Awards from Cornell’s Center for Hospitality Research and has been featured in media outlets as: Wall Street Journal, TIME Magazine, BusinessWeek, USA Today, U.S. News and World Report, and numerous other domestic and international periodicals. In addition to research, Clay teaches a range of courses at the masters and doctoral levels focused on innovating and launching new goods and services, insights and analytics, and marketing management.