Drawn on social psychology theory of impression management (IM), the purpose of this paper is to assess the way Portuguese managers build their narratives in chairman’s statement (CS) to manage stakeholders’ perceptions on corporate image, in a period of time of scarce resources.
The paper’s theoretical framework draws on elements of social psychology theory of IM developed by Leary and Kowalski (1990). Through the use of the two-component model of IM (impression motivation and impression construction) the 45 CSs of Portuguese non-finance companies were content analysed to understand how managers build their voluntary communication strategies.
Results indicate that organisational outcome does not influence the adoption of IM strategies. But public visibility and consumer proximity are crucial factors in explaining them. Larger companies with high consumer proximity present themselves in a favourable way, but consistent with an overall reading of the annual report. These companies show a higher level of verbosity, consistent to the argument of retrospective rationality.
The present study goes beyond Merkl-Davies et al. (2011) work and obtains insightful knowledge on the influence of goal relevance of impression in three different perspectives: company’s public visibility, company’s dependency from debtholders, and consumer proximity. Moreover, the analysis uses a period of scarce resources and a European Latin country, with no tradition in publishing CSs, but that recently has changed its financial reporting practices from an institutional code-law logic to an institutional common-law logic. A research setting like this has not been studied hitherto.
Oliveira, J., Azevedo, G. and Borges, F. (2016), "Impression management and self-presentation dissimulation in Portuguese chairman’s statements", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 21 No. 3, pp. 388-408. https://doi.org/10.1108/CCIJ-11-2015-0074Download as .RIS
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