Conflicting Social Motives in Negotiating Groups
Posted: 6 Aug 2002
Negotiating groups composed of 4 members with different social motives were examined to determine the impact of social motive composition on negotiation behavior. Theories of negotiation, experimental games, and group altruism were used to develop hypotheses regarding how social motive composition influences negotiation strategies and how negotiation strategies change over time. 36 groups in 5 composition conditions (all cooperatives; 3 cooperatives/1 individualist; 2 cooperators/2 individualists; 1 cooperator/3 individualists; all individualists) were coded for negotiation behavior. Results showed that social motive composition influenced use of negotiation strategies. Supporting expectations derived from the experimental games literature, groups that included one or more individualistic members used relatively more distributive strategies than did groups composed of all cooperative members. Supporting negotiation theory, the more cooperative members in the group, the more integrative information was exchanged. Use of negotiation strategies also changed over time. Distributive strategies peaked at the beginning of the negotiation and gradually decreased. Integrative strategies increased significantly at the midpoint of the group meeting. Groups composed of equal numbers of cooperatives and individualists appeared to be the least likely to experience this transition.
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