Impression Management


S. Muniyandi

Assistant Professor, Kasturba Nursing College, Kasturba Health Society, Sevagram 442102

Wardha District, Maharashtra

*Corresponding Author’s Email:



Increases the probability of a desired outcome, Impression Management is one such as friendship or power or be it material to more competent.


KEYWORDS: Impression Management ; leadership behaviour; probability of a desired outcome




All the world’s stage and all the men and women merely players


Towards a Definition:

It is a goal-directed conscious or unconscious attempt to influence the perceptions of other people about a person, object or event by regulating and controlling information in social interactions4.

The process through which individuals attempt to influence the impressions other people form of them.


Why is it needed?

·         Creating a good impression is needed at a job interview.

·         Managers need to exhibit the correct image to their employees.

·         Plays a vital role in leadership behaviour

·         Educators need to create a favourable impression among learners for the teaching learning process to be effective

·         Vital to effective organizational communication1-4


Impression management tactics:

·         Verbal

·         Non verbal


Non-verbal tactics: 

·         Facial expressions

·         Touching

·         Body orientation

·         Posture

·         Interpersonal distance5


First impression the 93% rule

55% appearance and body language  

38% tone, pitch and pace of your voice

7% what you say 6


Within three seconds of seeing a person for the first time we decide their:

·         Social status

·         Education

·         Religion

·         Sexuality

·         Friendliness / approachability8


Verbal impression management tactics:

·         Assertive tactics

·         Defensive tactics


Taxonomy of impression management tactics – Jones and Pittman:

·         Ingratiation

·         Self promotion

·         Exemplification

·         Intimidation

·         Supplication 6-7



·         It could in other words also be called “attraction management”

·         The task and challenge of the ingratiator is to find out what the audience finds attractive in an individual and then provide it to them


Types of ingratiation9

·         Self-enhancement

·         Other-enhancement

·         Opinion conformity

·         Favour doing


Self enhancement9-11

Speaking about self to make oneself be seen as more attractive



Supplying others with positive compliments.


Opinion conformity:

The individual expresses opinions or acts in a manner consistent with another person’s attitudes, beliefs and values to increase liking



·         People who do nice things are likely to be considered as caring, friendly and considerate.

·         A favour may be repaid in increased levels of liking by the boss.


Pitfall – “Ingratiator’s dilemma”

·         It means that the greater the need of the person to engage in ingratiation, the more likely that the attempts will be detected.

·         The audience may then react in a negative manner and come to dislike the actor more instead of liking



·         The self-promoter wants to be seen as competent instead of as likeable.

·         Successful self-promotion has the risk of causing others to feel jealous.



·         The ingratiator wants to be liked, the self-promoter wants to be seen as competent and the intimidator wants to be feared.

·         It might be most common to see intimidation flowing from high to low power


Pitfall- “intimidator’s illusion:

·         The intimidating individual may come to think that his behavior is liked and accepted and in reality it is detested.

·         The liking and acceptance are a result of the strategic ingratiation of the target audience to counter balance the influence



·         The exemplifier wants to be admired for discipline, honesty and decency.

·         The exemplifier is the boss who turns up early at work and leaves late or the colleague that never takes up holidays.

·         Involves strategic self sacrifice Advertises their behaviour



The danger is if the behaviour does not match what the exemplifier has claimed.



·         It involves exploiting ones weaknesses.

·         The individual emphasizes his own dependence and weakness to obtain help from a more powerful other.

·         An ideal way of applying supplication is through compensatory exchanges



With the final tactic of supplication the risk is created to be perceived as lazy and demanding.


Benefits of good impression management10

·         Increases the probability of a desired outcome, be it a interpersonal one such as friendship or power or be it material such as raise in salary due to being seen as more competent

·         Enhancing one’s self esteem.

·         Facilitating the development of desired identities.


















Received on 27.11.2015          Modified on 08.12.2015

Accepted on 15.12.2015          © A&V Publication all right reserved

Int. J. Adv. Nur. Management. 2016; 4(2): 178-180.

DOI: 10.5958/2454-2652.2016.00041.X