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Ingratiation and Self-Promotion in the Selection Interview:
The Effects of Using Single Tactics or a Combination of
Tactics on Interviewer Judgments
Open University of the Netherlands
Heerlen, The Netherlands
University of Leuven
This paper investigates the relative effectiveness of the use of 2 impression-
management tactics—ingratiation and self-promotion—on interviewers’ evaluations
of an applicant in a laboratory setting. It was suggested that the use of a single tactic
would be better than the use of no tactic; that the use of self-promotion would be
more successful than the use of ingratiation; and, ﬁnally, that the use of a combina-
tion of tactics would lead to the best evaluations. Results were largely in line with our
hypotheses. Interviewer ratings and action recommendations were more positive in
the combination condition, followed by the self-promotion condition, the ingratia-
tion condition, and the neutral condition. Theoretical and practical implications are
Over 50 years ago, Goffman (1955) drew attention to the fact that people
consciously manage the impressions they convey to others in interpersonal
interactions. Especially in high-stakes situations, people will try to convey
a positive self-image by employing impression-management behaviors. This
also applies to the selection interview, which, unlike some other selection
devices (e.g., cognitive ability test, personality inventory), is characterized by
these social dynamics (Judge, Higgins, & Cable, 2000). Both the interviewer
and the applicant will attempt to create positive images relative to each other,
for the applicant to get the best job and for the organization to attract the
best applicant (Gilmore & Ferris, 1989).
1Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Karin Proost, Hogeschool-
Universiteit Brussel, Stormstraat 2, 1000 Brussels, Belgium. E-mail: Karin.email@example.com
Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 2010, 40, 9, pp. 2155–2169.
©2010 Copyright the Authors
Journal of Applied Social Psychology ©2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Past research has investigated applicants’ use of impression-management
(IM) tactics and how these tactics inﬂuence interviewer decisions. It was
found that IM tactics, and more speciﬁcally ingratiation and self-promotion,
were frequently used by applicants (Stevens & Kristof, 1995) and that these
tactics can be employed successfully in employment interviews (for a review,
see Higgins, Judge, & Ferris, 2003).
In current research on IM, however, IM tactics are often studied in
isolation, without considering the relative effectiveness of different tactics.
Therefore, the present study examines the relative effectiveness of the two
most frequently used tactics; namely, ingratiation and self-promotion
(Stevens & Kristof, 1995), with respect to personnel selection outcomes.
Although Kacmar and colleagues (Kacmar & Carlson, 1999; Kacmar,
Delery, & Ferris, 1992) already found that ingratiation was more effective
than self-promotion, these studies did not compare the use of a single tactic
to a neutral condition in which the applicant uses no IM tactics. Therefore,
the present study extends this research by comparing the effectiveness of
these tactics with a neutral condition, in which no IM tactics are employed.
The effects of combining different tactics have largely been ignored
(Higgins et al., 2003). Therefore, the current study also investigates the effect
of combining ingratiation and self-promotion tactics on personnel selection
outcomes. More speciﬁcally, it is investigated whether the combination of
these tactics will lead to more positive selection outcomes than the use of a
single tactic or no use of IM tactics at all.
Types of Impression-Management Tactics
Impression management refers to the activity of controlling information in
an attempt to steer the impression others form of oneself in the service of
personal or social goals (Schlenker & Pontari, 2000). IM tactics were classi-
ﬁed by Tedeschi and Melburg (1984) as either assertive or defensive. Whereas
assertive IM tactics are used to bolster one’s image (e.g., self-enhancement,
other-enhancement), defensive tactics are employed to protect or repair one’s
image (e.g., accounts, excuses, apologies). Tactical assertive behaviors, con-
trary to defensive behaviors, seem particularly salient for applicants to use in
an employment interview (Gilmore & Ferris, 1989) and, therefore, are the
focus of the current study.
The two most frequently used assertive IM tactics in employment inter-
views are ingratiation and self-promotion (Stevens & Kristof, 1995). Ingra-
tiation tactics are used to evoke interpersonal attraction or liking, while
self-promotion tactics are intended to draw attention to the positive qualities
of oneself, one’s future plans, or one’s past accomplishments.
2156 PROOST ET AL.
Although both IM tactics can be classiﬁed as assertive tactics, they differ
in where they focus the conversation (i.e., on the applicant or on the inter-
viewer). Where ingratiation is other-focused, used to increase interpersonal
attraction or liking by employing subtle mechanisms of inﬂuence (i.e., ver-
bally praising the other person, conforming with the opinion of the other
person), self-promotion is self-focused, used to highlight one’s positive quali-
ties or to draw attention to past accomplishments (Kacmar et al., 1992;
Stevens & Kristof, 1995).
Relative Effectiveness of IM Tactics
Both ingratiation and self-promotion tactics have been positively related
to interviewer evaluations (Ellis, West, Ryan, & DeShon, 2002) and hiring
recommendations (Gilmore & Ferris, 1989; Kacmar et al., 1992) and have
been found to signiﬁcantly predict whether applicants later obtained onsite
visits from the organization in a real personnel selection context (Stevens &
Kristof, 1995). However, ingratiation (belonging to the category of other-
focused tactics) and self-promotion (belonging to the category of self-focused
tactics) have been shown to have differential effectiveness with respect to
different outcomes. In general, it has been found that self-focused IM tactics
are more effective in employment interviews than are other-focused IM
tactics (Dipboye & Wiley, 1977; Kacmar & Carlson, 1999; Tullar, 1989).
More speciﬁcally, Kacmar et al. found that applicants who used self-focused
tactics received higher ratings and were given more job offers and fewer
rejections, but were not given more second interview offers.
Ferris and Judge (1991) developed a framework on political inﬂuence in
personnel/human resources management in which they proposed three medi-
ating processes by which applicant behaviors can inﬂuence employment
interview outcomes; namely, affect or liking, perceived ﬁt, and assessment of
competence. Ingratiation is mainly focused on increasing liking and affect
through stimulating perceived similarity between the applicant and the inter-
viewer, leading to higher levels of perceived person–organization (P-O) ﬁt
(Chen, Lee, & Yeh, 2008) and overall ﬁt (Higgins & Judge, 2004). Self-
promotion, on the other hand, is mainly directed toward increasing the
assessment of competence (Jones & Pittman, 1982; Rudman, 1998), which
has been found to lead to higher levels of perceived person–job ﬁt (Kristof-
Brown, Barrick, & Franke, 2002), but to lower levels of perceived similarity
(Howard & Ferris, 1996). As such, the differential orientation of ingratiation
and self-promotion, and the related outcomes, might explain why ingratia-
tion has been found to be more effective in employment interviews than
IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT AND INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS 2157
However, research on IM tactics has not allowed us to make any state-
ments on the extent to which the use of IM tactics (i.e., ingratiation, self-
promotion) improves interviewer decisions, compared to a neutral condition
in which applicants use no IM tactics. Therefore, the current study compares
a neutral condition in which no IM tactics are employed to two IM condi-
tions: one in which the applicant employs ingratiation tactics and one in
which the applicant employs self-promotion tactics.
Further, this study includes a combination condition in which applicants
use both tactics together. Although Baron (1986) found that the combination
of two nonverbal IM tactics in the employment interview induced a “too-
much-of-a-good-thing” effect, and thus led to lower interviewer evaluations.
Higgins et al. (2003) suggested that certain combinations of tactics may be
particularly successful in obtaining desirable outcomes. Evidence for this idea
was provided in a study by Falbe and Yukl (1992), who found that inﬂuence
attempts in which a pair of tactics was used had more favorable outcomes
than when a single tactic was used. Bolino and Turnley (2003) suggested
more speciﬁcally that the combination of self-promotion with ingratiation
might be an especially successful recipe. If ingratiation leads to higher per-
ceived similarity between the applicant and the interviewer (Chen et al.,
2008), while self-promotion increases the perception of competence (Jones &
Pittman, 1982; Rudman, 1998), combining both tactics might, indeed, be a
good strategy to inﬂuence interviewer evaluations.
In line with this stream of research, the following hypotheses are
Hypothesis 1. Participants in the combination condition will
rate the applicant most positively, followed by participants in
the self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and
the neutral condition.
Hypothesis 2. Participants in the combination condition will be
the most likely to offer a job, followed by participants in the
self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and the
Hypothesis 3. Participants in the combination condition will be
the least likely to reject the applicant, followed by participants
in the self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and
the neutral condition.
Hypothesis 4. Participants in the combination condition will be
the most likely to invite the applicant for a second interview,
followed by participants in the self-promotion condition, the
ingratiation condition, and the neutral condition.
2158 PROOST ET AL.
Data were collected from 160 psychology students (76 men, 84 women) at
a large public university. Students were randomly assigned to one of four
experimental conditions. Participants’ average age was 19.0 years (SD =1.0).
The students participated in the study to receive credit points.
Participants in each experimental condition were asked to imagine
themselves working in a company’s human resources department. After
receiving a short introduction on the experiment and some oral information
about the company, the participants were assigned the task of hiring an
assistant IT manager, who specializes in the design of Internet and Intranet
software. The participants were told that applicants for the job had already
been attracted and now were invited for a brief selection interview. They
received a short job description and a curriculum vitae (CV) of one ﬁctive
The experiment consisted of rating the applicant on the basis of a video-
taped selection interview. A between-persons design was used such that each
participant viewed only one condition. After having seen the videotape,
participants were asked to rate the applicant by completing a questionnaire.
Development of Videotapes
Videotaped interviews of an applicant for the job of assistant IT manager
and an interviewer were constructed to be approximately 5 min long. The
interviewer was near the camera, so it appeared that the applicant was
speaking to the research participants, or looking toward the camera. The
research participants could hear the interviewer ask the questions, but did not
see him on the video. The ﬁctive applicant was sitting behind a table and was
visible from his waist up.
The ﬁctive applicant was an assistant in the university’s Department of
Personnel Psychology, who had experience with conducting selection inter-
views. Before starting, the ﬁctive applicant carefully studied the different
experimental conditions so that his answers would appear to be ﬂuent and
IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT AND INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS 2159
Every interview consisted of eight questions of which two questions—
and, more speciﬁcally, their answers—were kept constant across the experi-
mental conditions. Answers on the other six questions differed between the
experimental conditions, but only with respect to the IM tactic(s) employed.
This means that the answers only differed in one or two sentences that were
added, depending on the experimental condition.
In the ﬁrst, neutral condition, the applicant answered in a neutral way,
without employing IM tactics. The second condition was the ingratiation
condition in which the applicant used verbal tactics to make the interviewer
feel good about himself or herself. For example, in this condition, the appli-
cant complimented the interviewer on the way he conducted the selection
interview. The third condition was the self-promotion condition, in which the
applicant directed attention to his positive qualities. For example, the appli-
cant emphasized different extracurricular activities in which he participated
and that could beneﬁt him in this job. The fourth condition was the high IM
condition and combined the IM tactics used in the ingratiation condition and
Job description, CV, content and structure of the interview were kept
constant across the four experimental conditions. Also, nonverbal behavior
was controlled for by having the same male person playing the four condi-
tions, dressed identically and being interviewed in the same ofﬁce setting. If,
during the taping, the interviewer or the ﬁctive applicant had the feeling that
the nonverbal behavior was not kept constant, the experimental condition
was redone. Finally, three independent judges from the department looked
at all videotapes in order to evaluate the standardized use of nonverbal
behavior across conditions.
Interviewer rating. In line with Kacmar et al.’s (1992) study, participants
were asked to rate the applicant on 12 qualities. These qualities are ﬂexibility,
skills,conﬁdence,technical skills,analytical ability,conceptual ability, and
knowledge of Internet and Intranet applications. The items were rated on
a 4-point scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree)to4(strongly agree).
Cronbach’s alpha for the scale was .84.
Action recommendation. In line with Kacmar et al. (1992), three items
were formulated with respect to action recommendation and were used
separately in the analyses. The three questions are “Would you invite the
2160 PROOST ET AL.
applicant for a second interview?”; “Would you offer the applicant a job?”;
and “Would you send the applicant a rejection letter?”. All items were rated
on a 4-point scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree)to4(strongly agree).
Manipulation check. In order to verify whether IM had been manipulated
adequately, three items were added to the questionnaire. Items questioned
the degree to which the participants felt that the applicant had answered in a
neutral way, used ingratiation tactics, and used self-promotion tactics. All
items were rated on a 4-point scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree)to4
In order to ensure that the four conditions were constant with respect to
job-relevant information and in line with Kacmar et al.’s (1992) study, par-
ticipants were asked to indicate when during the interview they arrived at
their decision (i.e., after reading the CV, after the interview; 0 =no,1=yes)
and which characteristics, based on the 12 qualities on which they rated the
applicant, were important in their decisions. The items were framed as “The
following qualities of the applicant have led to my decision...” and were
answered on a 4-point scale ranging from 1 (totally disagree)to4(totally
In order to verify whether IM had been manipulated adequately, a
MANOVA was computed, using the three items that measured the extent to
which the applicant engaged in IM tactics as the dependent variables, and IM
as the independent variable. The MANOVA shows an overall signiﬁcant
effect for the independent variable, F(9, 353) =14.52, p<.001. Also, the three
univariate tests show signiﬁcant effects in line with the IM manipulations in
the different experimental conditions. Descriptive statistics are presented in
Table 1. In the combination condition, respondents rated higher on self-
promotion tactics than on ingratiation tactics (i.e., 3 out of 4 paired ttests
were signiﬁcant at .01), which makes the experimental condition in line with
that of Stevens and Kristof’s (1995) ﬁeld study.
In order to ensure that the four conditions were constant with respect to
job-relevant information and in line with Kacmar et al. (1992), a second
MANOVA was performed, with the importance of each of the 12 character-
istics in the decision-making process and the moment of decision making as
dependent variables, and IM as the independent variable. The results show
no signiﬁcant effect for importance of the characteristics in the decision-
making process and the moment of decision making, F(42, 280) =0.84,
IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT AND INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS 2161
p=.75. These results suggest that the four experimental conditions were,
indeed, equal with respect to job-relevant information.
A MANOVA was conducted in order to test Hypotheses 1 through 4,
with interviewer rating and each of the three action recommendation items as
dependent variables, and IM as the independent variable. The results show
an overall signiﬁcant main effect for IM, F(12, 379) =2.65, p=.002, h2=.07.
Consequently, four univariate ANOVAs were conducted to explore the
effects at the level of each dependent variable. Also, follow-up paired com-
parisons (using Tukey’s HSD correction) were performed to explore the
mean differences between the conditions.
Hypothesis 1 predicted that participants in the combination condition
would give the applicant the highest rating, followed by participants in the
self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and ﬁnally the neutral
condition. A one-way ANOVA was signiﬁcant for interviewer ratings, F(3,
146) =8.79, p=.000, h2=.15. Inspection of the means shows that the highest
Mean Values on Items Measuring Adequacy of the Experimental
Item Neutral Ingratiation Self-promotion Combination
In general, the
responded in a
neutral way to
2.85 2.38 2.66 2.28
The applicant tried
to ﬂatter me during
1.95 3.38 2.17 3.49
3.18 3.35 3.91 3.85
Note. Entries in boldface show that impression management had been manipulated
adequately in the different conditions.
2162 PROOST ET AL.
rating was given in the combination condition (M=35.56, SD =4.50),
followed by the self-promotion condition (M=34.08, SD =0.08), the ingra-
tiation condition (M=32.50, SD =6.26), and ﬁnally the neutral condition
(M=29.36, SD =29.36). Follow-up paired comparisons, however, only
reveal a signiﬁcant difference between the neutral condition and both the
self-promotion condition and the combination condition. The ingratiation
condition did not differ signiﬁcantly from all other conditions.
Hypothesis 2 predicted that participants in the combination condition
would be the most likely to offer a job, followed by participants in the
self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and ﬁnally the neutral
condition. A one-way ANOVA was signiﬁcant for job offers, F(3, 146) =3.57,
p=.02, h2=.07. Inspection of the means shows that the highest rating was
given in the combination condition (M=2.82, SD =0.51), followed by the
self-promotion condition (M=2.70, SD =0.52), the ingratiation condition
(M=2.53, SD =0.76), and ﬁnally the neutral condition (M=2.39, SD =0.65).
Follow-up paired comparisons, however, only reveal a signiﬁcant difference
between the neutral condition and the combination condition. The ingratia-
tion condition and the self-promotion conditions did not differ signiﬁcantly
from each other, nor did they differ signiﬁcantly from the neutral and the
Hypothesis 3 predicted that participants in the combination condition
would be the least likely to reject the applicant, followed by participants in
the self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition, and ﬁnally the
neutral condition. A one-way ANOVA was not signiﬁcant, F(3, 146) =1.64,
p=.18; and follow-up paired comparisons show no signiﬁcant differences
between the conditions. Inspection of the means, however, shows that the
results were in line with Hypothesis 3. The lowest rating was given in the
combination condition (M=2.18, SD =0.72), followed by the self-promotion
condition (M=2.27, SD =0.56), the ingratiation condition (M=2.45, SD =
0.76), and ﬁnally the neutral condition (M=2.50, SD =0.81).
Hypothesis 4 predicted that participants in the combination condition
would be the most likely to invite the applicant for a second interview,
followed by participants in the self-promotion condition, the ingratiation
condition, and ﬁnally the neutral condition. A one-way ANOVA was mar-
ginally signiﬁcant, F(3, 146) =2.45, p=.07, h2=.05. Inspection of the means
again shows that the results were mainly in line with Hypothesis 4. However,
the highest rating was given in the self-promotion condition (M=3.05, SD =
0.62), followed by the combination condition (M=2.92, SD =0.48), the
ingratiation condition (M=2.87, SD =0.81), and ﬁnally the neutral condition
(M=2.64, SD =0.72). Follow-up paired comparisons only reveal a signiﬁ-
cant difference between the neutral condition and the self-promotion
IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT AND INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS 2163
The aim of the present study was to investigate the relative effectiveness of
applicants’ use of IM tactics in the selection interview. This study contributes
to the current literature in the sense that the effectiveness of ingratiation and
self-promotion were studied, relative to each other and relative to a neutral
condition in which the applicant used no IM tactics. A combination con-
dition, in which the applicant combined both tactics, was compared to
the neutral condition and the single use conditions (i.e., ingratiation and
All results were in the expected direction. In general, interviewers’ rating
and action recommendations were more positive in the combination condi-
tion, followed by the self-promotion condition, the ingratiation condition,
and the neutral condition. However, although the results were in line with the
Kacmar et al.’s (1992) ﬁnding that self-promotion tactics are more effective
than ingratiation tactics, the conditions did not differ signiﬁcantly from each
The current design allows us to reach clearer conclusions on the
effectiveness of different IM tactics, as a result of the inclusion of a neutral
and a combination condition. For example, the ingratiation condition
was less effective than was the self-promotion condition in the sense that
it did not differ signiﬁcantly from the neutral condition for any of the
dependent variables, while the self-promotion condition and the combina-
tion led to higher interviewer ratings. The self-promotion condition was
also more effective with respect to being offered a second interview, while
the combination condition was more effective with respect to getting a job
The results with respect to inviting the candidate for a second interview
are less clear. The highest mean level for this variable was found in the
self-promotion condition, with a slight decrease in the combination condi-
tion. These results were in line with Kacmar et al. (1992), who found dif-
ferent results with respect to this dependent variable (i.e., second-interview
offer), as compared to the other dependent variables in this study (i.e.,
interviewer ratings, job offer, rejection letter). This ﬁnding might be
explained by the double message that is included in inviting someone for a
second interview. On the one hand, this might mean that the interviewer
ﬁnds the applicant a good candidate for the job and, therefore, wants the
candidate to proceed through the rest of the selection procedure. On the
other hand, this might mean that the interviewer was not able to collect
enough information from the applicant and wants to be able to elaborate
more on certain aspects in a second, follow-up interview, as was the case in
Kacmar et al.’s study.
2164 PROOST ET AL.
Strengths and Limitations
A key problem with ﬁeld studies is determining when the applicant uses
IM and when the applicant responds in an honest and objective way
(Peeters & Lievens, 2006). Conducting a lab study enabled us to manipulate
IM use and to disentangle rival explanations for the results. This scenario
research methodology has been used effectively in the past and provides
several beneﬁts (Fandt & Ferris, 1990; Liden, Ferris, & Dienesch, 1988).
Scenarios provide respondents with standardized stimuli, thus eliminating
potential sources of interpretation error. Further, great effort was taken to
ensure that the job-related information presented was held constant across
the four scripts. Therefore, it is reasonable that observed differences between
the four conditions are a result of the manipulations in our study (i.e., level
On the other hand, this methodology limits the external validity of the
current study. The fact that interviewers evaluated a videotaped candidate
and had no face-to-face contact might have affected our results. For example,
Van Iddekinge, Raymark, and Roth (2003) showed that ratings of video-
taped interviews are more resistant to interviewee response distortion, which
means that the effect sizes in our study might have been an underestimation
of the real effect sizes.
Another limitation with respect to the external validity of this study is the
use of one applicant and one job. Using a male applicant—being evaluated
by both male and female interviewers—did not allow us to check for differ-
ences in evaluating applicants of the same sex/different sexes. For example,
Graves and Powell (1995) found that interviewers give higher ratings to
applicants of the opposite sex. Therefore, further research could be con-
ducted with both a male and a female applicant in each condition. Van
Vianen and Willemsen (1992) found that for higher level technical jobs, the
ideal candidate is described by job interviewers as having more masculine
traits than feminine traits. Since the job that was used in the present study
could be categorized as a higher level technical job and a male applicant was
used, this might have inﬂated ratings on the dependent variables. Therefore,
future research with other job descriptions and with male and female appli-
cants is warranted.
The use of one job also limits the generalizability of the results. Previous
research has shown that IM tactics can detract from, improve, or have no
impact on the image observers have of an individual, depending on the
characteristics of the situation in which the tactic was demonstrated (Giaca-
lone, 1985; Kacmar & Carlson, 1999; Tedeschi & Melburg, 1984). In this
study, a back-ofﬁce job was used, whereas the use of a more commercial job
with the same applicant could have shown very different results.
IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT AND INTERVIEWER JUDGMENTS 2165
Directions for Future Research
Further research is necessary to develop a deeper understanding of the
underlying processes that cause IM tactics to have an impact on interviewers’
evaluations. For example, little is known about how individual-difference
variables (e.g., interviewer experience, personality characteristics, gender)
moderate the way IM tactics are evaluated. For example, Baron (1986)
suggested that men base their evaluation more on external related factors
than do women and are less adapted to ignore certain aspects than are
women. Therefore, men would need more time to decide whether behavior is
either situational or dispositional than would women, leading to a more
negative evaluation when there are many external, distracting factors (e.g.,
IM behavior). Research on antecedents of the frequency and types of
IM tactics applicants use is rather scarce and has rarely considered the
joint inﬂuence of situational and dispositional variables (Van Iddekinge,
McFarland, & Raymark, 2007).
One meaningful way to move forward with this research is to develop
and test more comprehensive models of decision making in the employment
interview, considering simultaneously the inﬂuence of interviewer charac-
teristics, applicant behaviors, and situational characteristics, as well as
mediating processes (see Gilmore, Stevens, Harrell-Cook, & Ferris, 1999).
Several studies have already considered the inﬂuence of mediating vari-
ables, such as applicant similarity to the interviewer and interviewer affect
toward the applicant (e.g., Gallois, Callan, & Palmer, 1992; Howard &
Ferris, 1996). An even broader model of decision making was tested by Van
Iddekinge et al. (2007), who showed that interviewee personality affects the
use of IM tactics, which in turn affects interview performance, depending
on the situational strength of the context (i.e., getting a performance incen-
tive or not). Further research should continue in this direction since the
study of mediating and moderating inﬂuences is important in order to dis-
cover explanatory mechanisms through which IM tactics inﬂuence inter-
Other selection tools besides the selection interview deserve additional
attention. For example, Varma, Toh, and Pichler (2006) considered how
these same IM tactics may be used in job applicant letters, and their results
were in line with the results on the selection interview, in the sense that
self-focused tactics were more effective than were other-focused tactics.
Further research could be conducted in order to deepen our understanding of
how IM tactics may inﬂuence the decisions of recruiters who rely on written
applications, or a combination of written applications and selection
2166 PROOST ET AL.
The results of the current study suggest that it is better to use any type of
IM tactics in the interview than use no tactic at all. However, using only
ingratiation was not effective enough to differentiate oneself from the
applicant using no IM tactics. Using self-promotion or a combination of
self-promotion and ingratiation led to higher interviewer ratings. Using
self-promotion alone also led to more second-interview offers, whereas
using a combination of tactics also led to more job offers.
The current results were obtained with respect to selection interview
outcomes. One should be careful, however, in translating the results to other
contexts. In line with Higgins et al.’s (2003) meta-analytic review, it was
found that ingratiation—especially self-promotion—works well in an inter-
view. These results must be somewhat differentiated, since self-promotion
in particular appears to backﬁre in performance evaluations provided by
supervisors (Gordon, 1996). Jones and Pittman (1982) suggested that self-
promotion may be less successful when claims of competence can be veriﬁed.
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