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Article

Ainsworth Anthony Bailey

Even though there has been anecdotal evidence regarding the use of ingratiation techniques in retail salesperson-shopper interactions, surprisingly, there has been limited…

Abstract

Purpose

Even though there has been anecdotal evidence regarding the use of ingratiation techniques in retail salesperson-shopper interactions, surprisingly, there has been limited research on the nature of these ingratiatory techniques and their impact on consumers’ perceptions and attitudes. The research reported here was conducted to determine the extent to which different ingratiation techniques that have been identified as techniques used in non-retailing domains are also used by retail salespersons in salesperson-shopper interactions. In addition, it sought to assess whether there are additional ingratiation techniques used by retail salespersons in salesperson-shopper interactions that have not been identified in existing ingratiation literature. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

Two studies, drawing on research on ingratiation in other domains, were conducted in pursuit of realising the purpose. Study 1 was a survey involving a sample of 282 participants, which yielded 267 useable critical incident reports and 283 discrete examples of ingratiatory behaviours. Participants responded to various questions including a critical incident question. Cross-tabulations were, for the main part, used in assessing responses. A second survey involving 158 participants was undertaken as a verification study. This Study 2 yielded 144 useable responses.

Findings

Based on a critical incident technique (CIT), other enhancement: compliment and praise was the ingratiation technique most frequently cited by participants in the first sample, with product-customer enhancement being second and favour-rendering third. The Study 2 confirmed other enhancement: compliment and praise and product-customer enhancement as the top two techniques. Four new categories of ingratiatory behaviours emerged in retail salesperson-shopper interactions, and many of the ingratiatory behaviours previously identified in non-retailing contexts also exist in this retailing context.

Research limitations/implications

Both samples are US samples, and the method used was the CIT. Though the US samples are appropriate for this study, the study could be extended to other groups and across cultures, to see whether cultural differences in the use of, and consumer responses to, ingratiation techniques exist. The study also did not look at the retail salespeople’s perspectives regarding the use of these techniques. Hence further research should address dyadic interpretations of a single ingratiatory encounter; and efforts should also be made to assess how consumers respond to ingratiation in retailing.

Practical implications

The studies result in a classification of the influence techniques used most often in retail settings in the USA. Retailers should be aware that customers may, therefore, expect certain kinds of influence tactics and may not respond in the same way when there is a departure from a “customary” influence tactic.

Originality/value

Not much research has explored the different kinds of ingratiation techniques used in retail contexts; nor has the stream of research sought to categorise them.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 43 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article

Arup Varma, Soo Min Toh and Shaun Pichler

The purpose of present study is to examine the influence of impression management (IM) tactics (e.g. ingratiation) applied in job application letters on perceived…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of present study is to examine the influence of impression management (IM) tactics (e.g. ingratiation) applied in job application letters on perceived qualifications and hiring recommendations. The study aims to build on recent research done in the interview context, by studying IM specifically in the written form pertaining to a job application.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were gathered from 94 respondents asked to evaluate the job application letters of applicants for a mentoring program. IM was manipulated through the cover letter, such that, each subject received five cover letters, four of which engaged in ingratiation and one that had no ingratiation. Participants were required to evaluate the applicants' qualifications and make selection decisions.

Findings

The results of the study were consistent with those of the interview context. More specifically, ingratiation led to significantly higher ratings of applicants, and self‐focused tactics were more effective than other‐focused tactics.

Research limitations/implications

The findings of this research conveyed that most of the IM tactics significantly improve recruiters' evaluations of the applicants. Still, future research needs to further investigate this relationship in order to understand the specific nature of the IM tactics and develop a deeper understanding of the underlying processes that cause IM tactics to have an impact on recruiters' judgments.

Practical implications

The present study highlights the need for greater understanding of how IM tactics may influence the decisions of employers who rely on written applications, or a combination of job application letters and interviews. Therefore, employers need to be aware of the use of IM in written applications and emphasize the importance of interviews in the selection process.

Originality/value

Existing research has been concerned with how IM tactics influence interview outcomes and has overlooked how these same IM tactics may be used in job application letters to influence selection decisions. This study addresses this gap by focusing on the job application letter as a means of conveying and managing impressions by candidates.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

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Article

Steven H. Appelbaum and Brent Hughes

This article examines the place of organizational politics in general and ingratiation specifically as a tactic in which there is an attempt by individuals to increase…

Abstract

This article examines the place of organizational politics in general and ingratiation specifically as a tactic in which there is an attempt by individuals to increase their attractiveness and upward influence in the eyes of other organizational members (management). Four common tactics of ingratiators were identified: other enhancement, rendering favors, opinion conformity and self‐presentation. Suggests that ingratiation is influenced by individual variables such as: Machiavellianism, locus of control and work task uniqueness. Furthermore, situational variables affect this political behavior There were mixed research results on the impact of ingratiation on further career success. Some recent research concluded that this tactic has little or no effect on extrinsic and intrinsic rewards available to the individual.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 36 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article

Imran Shafique, Ahmad Qammar, Masood Nawaz Kalyar, Bashir Ahmad and Anila Mushtaq

The aim of this study is to examine the influence of workplace ostracism on deviant behaviour and testified the mediating roles of organisational identification, burnout…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study is to examine the influence of workplace ostracism on deviant behaviour and testified the mediating roles of organisational identification, burnout and organisation-based self-esteem (OBSE) by using a parallel mediation model. Then, the moderating role of ingratiation in the interrelation between ostracism, the mediators and deviant behaviour is examined.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey questionnaire was used to collect data from nurses working in public sector hospitals in Pakistan. Nursing context is appropriate for the study because this occupation involves a greater extent of social interaction among peer nurses, doctors and administration in the provision of health services. A total of 417 nurses provided complete responses, and the study hypotheses were tested using the partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM).

Findings

The study findings show that ostracism is positively related to deviant behaviour of nurses, indicating that workplace ostracism is an important predictor of deviant behaviour. Ostracised nurses experienced higher job burnouts and low OBSE as well as organisational identification. Results also show that ostracism promotes deviant behaviour by reducing OBSE and organisational identification. Moreover, results provide evidence that high ingratiation overcomes the detrimental effects of ostracism on both deviant behaviour and mediators.

Originality/value

The present study integrates the literature on ostracism and its attitudinal and behavioural outcomes and submits that ostracism negatively affects the attitudes of victims which in turn results in negative behavioural outcomes (i.e. deviant behaviour). This study also suggests ingratiation as a tactic to control the negative effects of ostracism.

Details

Journal of Asia Business Studies, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1558-7894

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Article

James H. Dulebohn, Brian Murray and Gerald R. Ferris

Interest in the nature of influence attempts in the performance evaluation process has increased in recent years. Researchers have conducted a number of important and…

Abstract

Interest in the nature of influence attempts in the performance evaluation process has increased in recent years. Researchers have conducted a number of important and revealing cross‐sectional investigations, but there remains virtually no longitudinal work in this area. The present study attempted to address this need by conducting a multi‐period investigation of influence tactics use and affect that addressed three questions: (1) Are individuals consistent in their use of influence tactics across evaluation periods? (2) Are prior‐period performance ratings reflected in subsequent influence tactic use? (3) What role does affect, both supervisor and subordinate, play in this process? A latent variable structural model was tested using longitudinal data from managers and employees of food services units. Our results indicated that there is a cycle of continued influence tactic use across time periods, performance ratings help to determine subsequent tactic use, and both supervisor and subordinate affect play a role in the influence‐evaluation process. Implications of these results and directions for future research are discussed.

Details

Organizational Analysis, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1551-7470

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Article

Mark C. Bolino, Anthony C. Klotz and Denise Daniels

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…

Abstract

Purpose

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.

Design/methodology/approach

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.

Findings

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. The influence 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.

Practical implications

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.

Originality/value

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.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

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Article

Dara G. Schniederjans, Stephen A. Atlas and Christopher M. Starkey

As organizations increasingly engage with consumers over mobile devices, there is a growing need to understand how consumers react to impression management over platforms…

Abstract

Purpose

As organizations increasingly engage with consumers over mobile devices, there is a growing need to understand how consumers react to impression management over platforms with limited textual content. The purpose of this paper is to empirically assess how different impression management tactics can be used in mobile media to enhance consumer perception-attitude-intentions toward a corporate brand.

Design/methodology/approach

We surveyed 670 consumers and estimate structural equation models and repeated-measures ANOVAs to determine how short passages employing alternate impression management tactics influence consumers’ perceptions, attitudes and purchase intentions.

Findings

Results reveal that each impressions management tactic (i.e. ingratiation, intimidation, organizational promotion, supplication and exemplification) influences consumer perceptions, attitudes and intentions. The authors compare differences in how the impressions management tactics influence each stage of the perception-attitude-intentions model and find evidence that initial differences in perceptions favoring ingratiation and exemplification appeals become magnified for purchase intentions.

Research limitations/implications

Recent calls for research focus on an understanding of how consumers process information on reduced-content platforms of small-screened mobile devices. These results provide empirical evidence of the use of impression management and the difference between five impression management tactics on enhancing consumer perception-attitude-intentions model.

Practical implications

The results of this study will provide marketers with insights to optimize communications and corporate brands with consumers over mobile media.

Originality/value

This paper adds to the nascent yet vital literature on mobile marketing by focusing on how impression management tactics influence perceptions, attitudes and intentions through the short message characteristic of mobile platforms. The authors develop a framework for how corporate brand management can strategically use impressions management tactics in this novel domain.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Book part

Wayne A Hochwarter

They say Eve tempted Adam with an apple. But man I ain’t going for that.Pink Cadillac – Bruce SpringsteenAll through history, individuals have spent considerable effort…

Abstract

They say Eve tempted Adam with an apple. But man I ain’t going for that. Pink Cadillac – Bruce SpringsteenAll through history, individuals have spent considerable effort attempting to influence the behaviors and beliefs of others. As a principal issue in psychology (Forgas & Williams, 2001), social influence processes have been the subject of inquiry for a considerable length of time (Sherif, 1936) while Peterson (2001) argued that the manner in which individuals manipulate others represents the very core of social psychology. Extensive reviews of the social influence literature (e.g. Cialdini & Trost, 1998; Forgas & Williams, 2001) elucidate its powerful role in virtually all work and non-work domains.

Details

Emotional and Physiological Processes and Positive Intervention Strategies
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-238-2

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Article

Brooke A. Shaughnessy, Darren C. Treadway, Jacob A. Breland, Lisa V. Williams and Robyn L. Brouer

The current paper seeks to bring the political perspective to gender differences in promotion decisions, a phenomenon with great longevity in research and practice…

Abstract

Purpose

The current paper seeks to bring the political perspective to gender differences in promotion decisions, a phenomenon with great longevity in research and practice. Specifically, the degree to which gender role‐congruent and counterstereotypical influence behavior is related to liking as moderated by political skill.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a sample of n=136, these hypotheses were tested in retail organizations in the Northeast and Southwest.

Findings

Political skill significantly moderates the relationship between ingratiation and liking, such that use of ingratiation was positively related to liking when women were high in political skill. However, the relationship between assertiveness and liking was unchanged by political skill level and was unrelated to liking. Liking was consistently found to be positively related to promotability ratings.

Research limitations/implications

Questionnaire data collection is used exclusively; however, the subordinate and supervisor data were collected at two different times.

Practical implications

The results are relevant for employees in that they imply a need for them to be cognizant of their behavior as it relates to social role expectations and for supervisors to understand the factors that could contribute to lower ratings.

Social implications

The current results suggest that gender role‐congruent influence behavior is positively related to socially relevant evaluations (i.e. liking); thus, women whose behavior is consistent with social expectations may be more positively evaluated.

Originality/value

This study provides a political explanation for differences in women's promotability and also investigates mechanisms that may be related to reducing promotability disparity.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 26 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

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Article

Amos Drory and Nurit Zaidman

The purpose of this paper is to compare patterns of impression management in two organizational systems, namely, organic and mechanistic.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to compare patterns of impression management in two organizational systems, namely, organic and mechanistic.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative data were gathered from 23 employees by means of in‐depth, semi‐structured interviews. In addition, questionnaires pertaining to the use of impression management strategies toward superiors and peers were given to 208 employees from military and R&D organizations.

Findings

The results suggest that employees in mechanistic systems engage more in impression management behavior and direct their efforts more often toward their superiors than toward their peers, most frequently by using the strategy of “Ingratiation”. On the other hand, employees in the organic system sample use impression management to a lesser extent, and they direct it more equally toward superiors and peers. Their predominant strategy is “Initiation.” These results are discussed in light of the differences in the norms and structural characteristics of the two organizational systems.

Research limitations/implications

The mechanistic system was represented by a military organization and there is disproportionate representation of males in the survey sample.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates the importance of the specific characteristics of an organizational system in shaping employees' impression management behavior.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 22 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

Keywords

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