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Posted on August 30th, 2012, by

Self-presentation is verbal and nonverbal demonstration of self in the system of external communications. To make a good impression often means to achieve social and material success and get more firmly convinced in own social identity. Indeed, none of individuals wants to look absurdly inconsistent. To avoid this, people express settings, which correspond to their actions. In order to appear consistent, they can even simulate the social settings, they do not really believe in. Surely, this implies a certain insincerity or hypocrisy, but provides an opportunity to make the right impression. This makes the basic principle of self-presentation theory. Moreover, self-presentation involves not only the desire to make an impression, but also the demonstration of person’s thoughts and character (DuBrin, 2009).

The theory of self-presentation provides two main forms of self-presentation: natural and artificial. Natural self-presentation is inherent to all people without exception, and it is acquired from birth; starting from the first stages of their lives people collect the puzzle of their image.

These processes take place naturally, without deliberation and forecasting. The main disadvantage of natural self-presentation is that people cannot control and adjust the whole process, i.e. an individual does not choose whether his natural self-presentation will be positive or negative. The process can be described as uncontrolled; and one can do nothing about it, until he is able to implement an artificial self-presentation (Leary, 1996).

The main purpose of artificial self-presentation is to achieve loyalty inside the referentially meaningful group. This means that in order to get the favor of important people (having value in concrete situation or having constant value) one constructs an algorithm of communicative process with the potential audience. In general, this algorithm includes the following stages: 1) Analysis of the target audience; 2) Construction of the strategy of verbal and nonverbal manifestations of self in accordance with place and period of presentation; 3) Monitoring and adjusting of actions in accordance with the situation; 4) Implementation of natural self-presentation out of the context of the artificial one (Leary, 1996).

In order to implement a successful self-presentation, a consistent project plan should be worked out. First, it should be taken into account that “we”¯ are our physical appearance, style, behavior, manner of speaking, and other verbal and nonverbal manifestations in the society.

There are many methods of self-presentation; however, they should be chosen in compliance with the clear algorithm. After the thorough analysis, a person can chose one of the two ways to influence the audience.

The first of them is to implement self-adjustment for the specific target group. This tactics positions a person as referent and communicator, who is worth target group’s attention and respect. A technique of self-adjustment has the character of “psychological strokes”¯. A person becomes a part of the group, he wants to belong to and make an impression at (DuBrin, 2009). For example, in order to establish proper relations with the new colleagues, who used to spend free time playing football together, the author of this paper made an impression of a person, interested in sport, in particular, football. In this case, the audience successfully accepted a newcomer by unconsciously or consciously categorizing “we-they”¯ groups, referring him to “we”¯. The success of such self-presentation was guaranteed.

Another approach is self-presentation of dominance. The technique consists in self-presenting as a standard, a dominant personality in the group, having a corresponding influence on this group and taking the role of informal leader. However, this strategy is only suitable for groups of people ready to follow, while it may fail in the audience of leaders. That’s why the addressed audience should be carefully analyzed (DuBrin, 2009).

Concluding the abovementioned facts, it should be marked that a person is already a “brand”¯, “image”¯, and “corporate identity”¯. In this framework, self-presentation is an effective method of achieving loyalty of other people towards the person. Creation of image and skills of impression management can positively influence person’s character and his professional qualities.

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