BETTER TO BE LOVED BY SOME? FIRM FLAUNTING AS AN IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT STRATEGY

A. Erin Bass, Michael D. Pfarrer, Ivana Milosevic, Varkey K. Titus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Firms can use a range of proactive impression management behaviors to reduce the impact of a negative event on firmoutcomes. When a negative event is unpredictable, we theorize that firms can engage in ostentatious behaviors that display the firm's affluence and robust resource base. We term these behaviors "flaunting,"and we present a twopart model that investigates how flaunting can reduce the impact of an unpredictable negative event on firm outcomes and why it is effective at doing so. In part one, we theorize how flaunting can generate net positive stakeholder group evaluations by enhancing distinctiveness among stakeholder groups. In part two, we theorize that the net positive stakeholder group evaluations can buffer the impact of an unpredictable negative event on firm outcomes. We also maintain that this buffering effect is amplified when the flaunting firmactivelymanages stakeholder group distinctiveness. Thus,while flaunting can be both off-putting and enticing to different stakeholder groups, we theorize that courting the love of somemay be worth the cost of being disliked (orworse) by others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)292-312
Number of pages21
JournalAcademy of Management Review
Volume48
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Business, Management and Accounting
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

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