Presentation Details

The Fourth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations

Building Client Trust and Loyalty: Professionals as Stewards

Sheila Simsarian Webber.

Service organizations are developing customer-intimate, coproduction relationships in an attempt to enhance the quality and acceptance of services and promote the development of long-term business relations. Within the service organization, professional project managers are managing these customer-intimate relationships. Organizational behavior researchers know a great deal about interpersonal relationships within the organization; however, we know little about the client-professional relationship; the nature of the relationship, how it is developed and sustained, as well as its critical organizational outcomes. This proposed research uses what we know about interpersonal relationships from agency theory and stewardship theory, as well as relationship management/marketing, interpersonal and interorganizational trust, and product development/project management to offer an integrated model of the client-professional relationship impacting client trust and loyalty. This paper offers theoretical guidance regarding the application of agency, stewardship, and expanded stewardship models to the client-professional relationship. Further, this paper provides insights on how to manage client relationships to achieve client trust and loyalty.


Sheila Simsarian Webber  (United States)
Assistant Professor
School of Business
University of Southern Maine

Sheila Simsarian Webber is an Assistant Professor of Management in the School of Business at the University of Southern Maine. She received her Ph.D. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from George Mason University. Her current research interests include virtual teaming, team composition, project leadership, boundary management, and trust.

  • Client relationship management
  • Client trust and loyalty
  • Project manager - client coproduction

(Virtual Presentation, English)