The phenomena of organizational perception management is hardly new. The efforts of organizational spokespersons to protect and manage positive images, identities, or reputations of their organizations can be found in historical accounts of the Roman Catholic Church, and the universities of ancient Greece. The same perception management problems that plagued these early organizations (e.g. threats of illegitimacy due to changes in social norms; face-saving following scandals or accidents), continue to confront organizations today. During the past thirty years, these types of issues have been studied by organizational scholars in attempts to understand how perception management tactics affect the views and support critical audiences' (i.e. those audiences on which the organization depends for support). This paper provides an overview of this research and a framework defining the primary components of organizational perception management. This framework distinguishes organizational perception management from individual perception management in terms of its practical implementation and strategic nature. © 2003.
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