In the mid-twentieth century, mass production techniques and mass marketing chan ged the competitive landscape

by increasing product availability for consumers. However, the purchasing process that allowed the shopkeeper and customer to spen d quality time interacting with each other was also fundamentally changed. As a result, customers lost their uniqueness becoming an account number . Shopkeepers lo st track of their customers individual needs as the market became full of product and service options. Many companies today are striving to re-establish their co nnections to new as well as existing customers to boost long-term customer loyal ty (Chen and Popovich, 2003). The world has come full circle from selling to marketing and from seller s market to buyer s market. The customer today has the option to buy what he thinks he shou ld and from whom, being in his best interest. Product development, technological improvement, cost optimization and excellent service facility are very importan t for any organisation but their importance is only if the customer appreciates it. For example, both diamond and coal are carbon but they are priced differentl y due to different valuations by the customer. Therefore, any business begins an d ends with the customer (Sugandhi, 2002). Thus, service organizations are shift ing their focus from transactional exchange to relational exchange for developing mu tually satisfying relationship with customers. Extended relationships are report ed to have a significant impact on transaction cost and profitability, and custo mer lifetime value. Serving the customers, in true sense, is the need of the hou r as the customer was, is and will remain the central focus of all organizationa l activities. The paper explores The Dark Side of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) in the Luxury segment of the Hotel Industry using the gap model of Parasuraman et al (198 5) and suggests generic strategies to reduce the dark side. The researcher was m otivated to choose the hotel industry because of his deep rooted passion for lux ury hotels. The importance of this research is that it helped the researcher fam iliarize himself with the use of primary with a blend of secondary research to a nalyze a given situation. This piece of work shall contribute to the academic co mmunity as there is not much literature available on the dark side of CRM for th e luxury hotels. It shall also benefit the management of luxury hotels to unders tand what the customer expects in terms of service quality. The aim of this research is to highlight the dark side of CRM in the luxury segm ent of the hotel industry using The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company as a classic exam ple of high service quality. The research objectives are as follows: 1. Does the gap model explain the dark side of CRM?

2. Is there more to the dark side of CRM than what is explained in the gap model? 3. How can the dark side of CRM be reduced?

This paper is divided into seven chapters. Chapter one is an introduction to the paper. Chapter two provides the reader with necessary literature available on CRM. Chapter three provides information on CRM and the hotel industry. Chapter four discusses the research design including interviews and focus groups that have been used for primary research. Chapter five provides an overview of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company . Chapter six provides a summary of the research findings. Chapter seven is an analysis of the research findings addressing the research qu estions, one of which provides recommendations to reduce the dark side. Chapter eight is a conclusion of the paper.

.The following chapter provides the literature review.

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