My Way: Strategic Preferences Vary by Negotiator Role and Regulatory Focus

Kirstin C. Appelt
Columbia University

E. Tory Higgins
Columbia Business School – Management
IACM 23rd Annual Conference Paper


Negotiators may use vigilant, loss-minimizing strategies or eager, gain-maximizing strategies. The present study provides evidence that preferences for these different strategies depend on negotiator role and personal orientation. In a price negotiation, buyers and prevention-focused individuals prefer vigilant strategies whereas sellers and promotion-focused individuals prefer eager strategies. When there is a match between the strategy and the role (role-strategy fit) or between the strategy and the individual’s regulatory focus orientation (focus-strategy fit), the negotiator experiences more fit and plans to be more demanding in the negotiation. By manipulating strategy in a real, binding negotiation, we reveal its importance in determining negotiators’ subjective experiences and planned demand. Our results show that shared strategic preferences between different motivational orientations – negotiator role and personal regulatory focus – can create self-regulatory compatibility.

My Way- Strategic Preferences Vary by Negotiator Role and Regulatory Focus

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