2017 Volume 16 Issue 1 Pages 79-98
This paper examines the normative aspects of situational awareness in service encounters. A conversation analytic study of service interaction was conducted at an Italian restaurant in Japan to observe how service providers (waiters) judge whether customers have made a choice or not, and how they determine when to approach customers for taking their orders. The results of the analysis showed that waiters normally catch cues that convey that customers have disengaged from the activity of making choices. When waiters fail to notice such cues, customers hail them. This behavior demonstrates customers’ normative preference for being noticed by service providers over hailing them in service encounters.