“You live close to an atomic plant …”

Switzerland Bern Potassium Iodide

“… here is a package of Potassium Iodide. Welcome in town and have a nice day.”

Having moved to a new city recently, I was confronted with this slightly awkward end of an otherwise friendly and casual conversation at the city administration. The place that I currently call home is just close enough to an atomic power plant to make you feel uncomfortable from time to time (like when you read on Wikipedia how outdated the power plant is). The conversation at the city administration was the first time that I heard about my potential radioactive neighborhood and it reminded me of a classic psychological phenomenon that is better known as the recency effect.

The recency effect explains why most recently presented items on a list will most likely be remembered best. One may argue that the very same holds true for any form of customer experience. The way a conversation ends, a retail store is exited or an online booking is placed might have a surpassing effect on the overall customer experience.
To what extent does that assumption prove itself true? While it’s important to get the whole customer experience right, should we put special emphasis on the beginning and at the end of the experience?