Impression Management, ingratiation, self-promotion, apologies, justifications
The purpose of these studies was to investigate how the repeated use of impression management (IM) tactics is related to supervisor perceptions in newly formed supervisor-subordinate dyads. Two studies were conducted – a lab study in which participants evaluated a confederate who performed an accounting task while using different types of IM across five trials, and a field study examining the IM tactics of new employees and their supervisors’ ratings of likability and performance at two points in time. In the lab study, the repeated use of ingratiation had an increasingly positive effect on performance ratings, whereas repeated apologies had an increasingly negative effect on evaluations of performance. Theinfluence of IM tactics on ratings of subordinate likability did not change with repeated use. In the field study, subordinates’ use of apologies and justifications was more strongly associated with supervisor evaluations of likability and performance in earlier stages of their relationship. Employees need to be mindful that IM tactics may vary in their effectiveness depending on the timing and frequency of their use. Furthermore, supervisors should consider the initial influence that IM has on their ability to objectively evaluate new subordinates. This research is unique in that it examined how the repeated use of both assertive (i.e. ingratiation and self-promotion) and defensive (i.e. apologies and justifications) IM tactics are related to both evaluations of likability and performance ratings at multiple points in time.
Bolino, M, Klotz, A.C., & Daniels, D. (2014). The impact of impression management over time. Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 29(3).