Gender Differences in Motives for Initiating and Avoiding Negotiations

  • Julia A.M. Reif (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)
  • Katharina G. Kugler
  • Felix C Brodbeck (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU) Munich)


To gain a more comprehensive understanding of gender differences in negotiations, we qualitatively (N = 1119) and quantitatively (N = 200) investigated men’s and women’s motives for initiating and avoiding negotiations. Men and women reported different relational and regulatory foci in negotiation initiation and avoidance motives, but similar modes of motives when legitimizing role-(in)consistent behaviors: Men avoiding and women initiating negotiations (i.e., role-inconsistent behavior) explained their behaviors by basic cybernetic, experiential motives (negative discrepancy and negative affect), which might legitimize their behaviors by reducing situational ambiguity. Men initiating and women avoiding negotiations (i.e., role-consistent behavior) underpinned their behaviors by cognitive motives with different relational and regulatory foci (independent self-construal and promotion focus for men; interdependent self-construal and prevention focus for women). We discuss how our research contributes to gender research, negotiation research, and gender-in-negotiation research, but also research on human motivation in general.

Keywords: Gender, Motives, Initiation, Avoidance, Negotiation, Mixed-Methods

How to Cite:

Reif, J. A. & Kugler, K. & Brodbeck, F. C., (2022) “Gender Differences in Motives for Initiating and Avoiding Negotiations”, Negotiation and Conflict Management Research 15(4). doi:


  • Bayerische Gleichstellungsförderung – Stipendium des Freistaates Bayern zur Förderung der Chancengleichheit für Frauen in Forschung und Lehre



Published on
25 Jan 2022
Peer Reviewed