Interview was executed by Matt Weingarden, AMA
Anders Gustaffson is one of two new members of the AMA Academic Council for the 2016-17 year. A professor of business administration at Karlstad Business School, Gustafsson was born and raised in Sweden. He has been quite in engaged with the European Marketing Academy (EMAC) as well as the Frontiers in Service Conference.
What attracted you to marketing as a discipline of study/career?
I had the good fortune to meet Claes Fornell as a Ph.D. student and he invited me spent time at the University of Michigan Business School. I met Michael Johnson there who really got me started in the marketing field. I ended up spending all my summers 2000-2004 in Michigan working with Michael until he became dean of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration.
What has been your most memorable publication?
I will of course have to say my first but hopefully not last Journal of Marketing article. I had to work quite hard to get the data from the company, and it took me months to re-structure and get the data into shape. The tools we had access to then was quite limited compared to what we have now. What made the publication was really an elevator discussion with Michel Wedel who briefly mentioned that we should look at previous behavior as one of the predictors in the model.
Gustafsson, A., M. D. Johnson and I. Roos (2005) “The Effects of Customer Satisfaction, Relationship Commitment Dimensions, and Triggers on Customer Retention,” Journal of Marketing, Volume 69, Number 4 (October): pp 210-218
Was there a pivotal moment or key person in your career?
Michael Johnson that was so generous to me in inviting me to work with him. I really cannot thank him enough. However, I have been quite fortunate to work with many really amazing researchers such as Parsu Parasuraman, Ruth Bolton, Steve Vargo and Robert Lusch to mention some of the most well-known ones.
If you had not gone into marketing, what would have been your alternative career?
Very difficult to answer but most of the people that I studied with joined some of the larger industrial companies in Sweden, e.g.,. Ericsson, Sandviken, or ABB and it is not implausible I could have gone there too. I had a job offer after my Ph.D. degree to join Ericsson and their market research division.
What about you surprises new students and/or colleagues?
I am not sure, probably all the collaborations I have with companies getting all the fun data we have access to. Lately, we have done a lot of sensory experiments with retail companies.
Coffee or Tea? And how do you take it?
I am a Swede, so we drink coffee and it generally is black