Negative impression management: the troublemaker as trouble seeker

Iris Mor, Shay S. Tzafrir, Yochanan Altman, Yehuda Baruch, I. Ting Chen, Konstantin Karl Weicht*

*Corresponding author for this work

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review


Extending the discourse on impression management, we explore a counter-intuitive workplace deviance phenomenon whereby employees aim to get themselves fired from their jobs. Employing exploratory qualitative methods, we collected evidence from employees who practice deliberate negative impression management (NIM), from parties who witnessed NIM, and from Human Resource (HR) managers who have dealt with NIM, in two distinct geographies: Israel and Taiwan. The paper outlines the diverse sources of NIM, its specified and unspecified aims, its actual consequences, and its prevalence. This unique dataset offers insights that extend our understanding of impression management theory and practice, serving as a mean to explicating a variant of deviant behavior at the workplace and providing information to HR personnel on ways to engage with the issue.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Human Resource Management
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Oct 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • Israel
  • negative impression management
  • proximal withdrawal states theory
  • qualitative methodology
  • signaling theory
  • Taiwan

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