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Service Encounters

Closings & Leave Takings

The Importance of Closings and Leave Takings

Much like openings to service encounters, closings are also very important. They are often used to build rapport between the service provider and the client. Furthermore, they often indicate the success or failure of a service encounter.

General Tendencies for Closings of Service Encounters

The types of leave takings used in service encounters vary greatly depending on the context and language variety of the interlocutors. Therefore, as is the case with many communicative acts, it is impossible to give an exact formula. However, some tendencies have been found. They are summarized for you in this section.

  • In sales interactions, the closing sequence typically includes deciding on the sale (me quedo con éste), an expression of gratitude for the attention received (Gracias), and an accumulation of leave-takings (Chao, que te vaya bien).
  • Leave-takings can confirm the interaction as a business transaction, if fewer leave takings are included.
  • Closings can also be one of the more personal elements of an interaction in which participants talk about personal topics such as politics, family, and health. This type of closing indicates that some service encounters are more like friendly conversations than others.

An Example Closing

The example given here is the conclusion of the Peruvian interaction we have been looking at throughout this module. It is very interesting because it indicates the importance of solidarity in service encounters between vendors and regular customers. As you listen to the concluding segment, notice how the client closes the sequence.

She says:

Saludos a tu esposa.


En el mercado

A Peruvian woman goes to the market to buy vegetables. She and the vendor negotiate the close of the interaction.

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