The term “perception management” leads one to conclude it is a technique to influence the belief others have of an event or action. That is, the application of “spin” following an event with the hope of reinforcing the interpretation of the event to reflect favorably the position or image of the spinner.
Actually, the definition above is not even close. Perception management is the whirling dervish of spin. Where spin attempts to influence the interpretation of events, perception management attempts to create events in the minds of the community with predetermined attributes useful to the organization creating the perception. Where spin deals with events after they occur, perception management deals with how events are interpreted before they occur. In fact, there is no requirement in the execution of perception management that the event actually occurs at all, only the belief that it did.