Communication Media Matters: Role Differences in Negotiation Behavior and Social Outcomes
5 Pages Posted: 25 May 2010
Forty-four EMBA students were randomly assigned to negotiate in either a face-to-face condition or a voice-only condition in an integrative negotiation task— New Recruits (Neale, 1987). We found that candidates in the voice-only condition had less interest in future negotiations than candidates in the face-to-face condition, F (1,36) = 5.5, p <0.05. These effects of communication media was not found for recruiters. Why were the candidates affected by the communication media, and not the recruiters? Looking at the content of the negotiations, we saw that recruiters communicated differently in the two conditions. Recruiters were found to use fewer affirmative responses (i.e., “uh-huh”, “I see”) in the voice-only condition compared with the face-to-face condition, F (1, 28) = 4.8, p < 0.05. These findings suggest that richness of media influences subtle differences in how the a more dominant partner communicates, which in turn influences the less dominant partner’s interest in future negotiations with that person. We will discuss how a negotiator's role and the type of media used for that negotiation can influence negotiation processes.
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