Date of Award

Spring 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Business Administration-Marketing

Committee Director

Chuanyi Tang

Committee Member

Yuping Liu-Thompkins

Committee Member

George Steven Rhiel


In the past few decades, customer co-creation has received a significant amount of attention in both practice and academics. Prahalad and Ramaswamy (2000) advocated co-opting customer competence as a competitive strategy. The purpose of this dissertation is to investigate how to engage customers and employees into the value co-creation process. This dissertation is composed of two essays. Essay 1 focuses on customer co-creation behaviors and Essay 2 examines employee co-creation behaviors.

Motivating customers to participate in the value co-creation process can help the firm achieve their long-term financial successes. However, the psychological mechanism underlying customer co-creation behavior is still not fully understood. Particularly, the goal-driven nature of customer co-creation is largely ignored in the literature. The objective of the first essay is to examine the dual role of goal self-concordance in customer co-creation behavior. Two studies will be conducted to examine each role respectively. Using four experiments, Study 1 examines the motivational power of goal self-concordance on customer co-creation behavior. Specifically, goal self-concordance is positively related to customers’ trying to participate in the co-creation process and anticipatory self-enhancement fully mediates the above relationship. Moreover, the results find that goal specificity weakens the relationship between goal self-concordance and anticipatory self-enhancement. In Study 2, three experiments are conducted to test the moderating effect of goal self-concordance on the relationship between co-creation goal achievement and customers’ perceived self-enhancement. The results find that customers’ perceived self-enhancement after co-creation goal achievement is positively related to customer satisfaction and their future co-creation behaviors and goal self-concordance mainly focuses on the direct effect to self-enhancement. Therefore, the moderating effect of goal self-concordance is not supported in this study. Theoretical and practical implications are also discussed.

Essay 2 focuses on employee co-creation behaviors. Although customer co-creation has received a significant amount of attention in both practice and academics, most of the previous studies were conducted from the customer perspective while little is known about how employees are involved in the value co-creation process. To shed new light on employee co-creation behavior, a scale of employee co-creation behavior is developed first, and then a theoretical model that investigates the antecedents and consequences of employee co-creation behavior is tested. To test the hypothesized model, a self-administered survey of 225 employees from a major Auto 4S store chain in China was conducted. The results find that both customer orientation and perceived organizational support are positively associated with employee co-creation behavior, which in turn influences employees’ job satisfaction and job stress. Moreover, firm cross-functional cooperation strengthens the relationships between perceived organizational support and employee co-creation behavior. The findings of the study will provide implications to managers regarding how to measure employee co-creation behavior and how to engage employees into the value co-creation process.