Impression Management at Foxconn

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As I read the first portion of the case, it reinforced my stereotype regarding Foxconn being a death camp for the factory workers. I picked this stereotype a year ago when reading a newspaper that sought to illustrate how Apple contributes to human rights violation by buying components from Foxconn (Chan, Pun & Selden, 2013). When I read that workers at Foxconn were committing suicide, I was angry since in my view, the unfortunate incidents were caused by poor working conditions. However, when I read more of the article, I realized that other factors could be at play and this happened especially when I read that, ‘suicide rate at Foxconn is less than one-tenth of the national suicide rate’. Furthermore, I realized that Foxconn campuses were much better compared to what the company’s employees were used to before employment (Luthje & Butollo, 2017). Therefore, the additional information about Foxconn changed my impression about the company to a great extent.

Question Two

            While the manual labor of assembling electronics is hard enough, the emotional burden of being away from family can be too hard to bear and hence the need for Foxconn to help employees to cope with the challenges. One of the ways through which the company can help is to provide counselling to the employees who having a difficult time with the isolation (Luthje & Butollo, 2017). Also, the company can provide means of communicating with family members. Furthermore, designing a system where employees could earn paid leave would help the workers to maintain a work-life balance since they would not have to sacrifice their family at the expense of the income (Xu & Li, 2013).

Question Three

            Foxconn has engaged in impression management in various ways. Notably, the case study notes that Foxconn pays employees amongst the best wages in China showing the company’s willingness to improve public perception. Besides, Foxconn has previously addressed mandatory overtime and child labor abuses hence positioning itself as a place where workers’ rights are respected and upheld (Luthje & Butollo, 2017). Additionally, Foxconn provided the employees with a secure and a decent place to stay that what they could afford on their own.  Consequently, Foxconn was successful at impression management since employees flocked at the firm in the hope of landing one of the coveted positions at the company.


Chan, J., Pun, N., & Selden, M. (2013). The Politics of Global Production: Apple, Foxconn and China's New Working Class. New Technology, Work and Employment, 28(2), 100-115.

Lüthje, B., & Butollo, F. (2017). Why the Foxconn Model Does Not Die: Production networks and Labor relations in the IT industry in South China. Globalizations, 14(2), 216-231.

Xu, K., & Li, W. (2013). An Ethical Stakeholder Approach to Crisis Communication: A case study of Foxconn’s 2010 employee suicide crisis. Journal of Business Ethics, 117(2), 371-386.

January 19, 2024




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