Reciprocation of monetary gifts is well-understood in economics. In contrast, there is little research on reciprocal behavior following immaterial gifts like compliments. We narrow this gap and investigate how employees reciprocate after receiving immaterial gifts and material gifts over time. We purchase (1) ice cream from fast food restaurants, and (2) durum doner, a common lunch snack, from independent vendors. Prior to the food's preparation, we either compliment or tip the salesperson. We find that salespersons reciprocate compliments with higher product weight than in a control treatment. Importantly, this reciprocal behavior following immaterial gifts grows over repeated transactions. Tips, in contrast, have a stronger level effect which does not change over time.
SAMHÄLLSVETENSKAP -- Ekonomi och näringsliv (hsv//swe)
SOCIAL SCIENCES -- Economics and Business (hsv//eng)