Impression management and the use of procedures at the Ritz‐Carlton: Moral standards and dramaturgical discipline

Journal Article (Journal Article)

This article uses Goffman's work on moral standards and dramaturgical discipline to inform a case study featuring a hotel's procedures for guaranteeing reliable impression management. Through an analysis of archival material and 18 interviews at two sites, we developed four categories of impression management behaviors. Viewing our analysis through Goffman's lens, we argue that procedures codify moral standards thereby offering employees specific means by which they can enact dramaturgical discipline. In our discussion we suggest several ways in which our case study reinforces and expands Goffman's original concepts. Our findings are (a) procedures can function as codified moral standards within the organizational setting, (b) procedures can serve as the basis for employee enactment of dramaturgical discipline, (c) the use of databases in collecting and storing information offers a new wrinkle to impression management theory, and (d) the use of incentives to pacify guests expands the defensive practices available to those engaging in impression management. © 2000, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Dillard, C; Browning, LD; Sitkin, SB; Sutcliffe, KM

Published Date

  • January 1, 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 51 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 404 - 414

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1745-1035

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1051-0974

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/10510970009388534

Citation Source

  • Scopus