Negotiations as a Conflict Management Tool

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Factors Influencing Negotiations

Amongst various factors that influence the result of negotiation, there are such factors as the chosen style that the sides of the conflict apply, the parties' personalities, and finally, their influence (Monich and Matveeva, 2012).

The negotiation process is essential in everyone's daily life as it helps people agree on different matters they have varying opinions on. For this reason, sides of any talks ought to apply useful negotiation strategies to get the desired outcomes. This paper examines how personality and negotiation style affect negotiations. I am also going to provide an analysis of my personal negotiation style. In all discussions, the personality of each of each of the parties involved coupled with the negotiation style they apply influences the process and certainly the outcome.

Impact of Personality Traits

To start with, personality traits such as shrewdness, go-getter attitude, cowardice among others affect the outcome of a negotiation process. For example, a shrewd negotiator will mostly push their agenda through a negotiation process and get what they want (Marcus, Dorn and McNulty, 2012). On the contrary, a negotiator who is filled with fear or has little self-confidence may be taken for a ride in a negotiation process and ultimately follow in the direction of the smart negotiator. A negotiator who wishes to successfully sail through a negotiation process should thus take care of personalities of the people involved (Marcus, Dorn and McNulty, 2012). For example, when dealing with a shrewd negotiator one should strive to gather as much information as possible to leverage their negotiation ground.

Negotiation Styles

Personality traits affect the negotiation style that a negotiator uses (Monich and Matveeva, 2012). For example, a shrewd negotiator will tend to use wit and brain power to outsmart their opponent whereas a bully will use force to compel the other party to give in to the bully’s demands. To win and benefit from a negotiation process, therefore, it is necessary for any party involved to know the personality of the opponents and master the negotiation style that they are likely to use. With this information, a negotiator will stand a better chance to benefit from the negotiation and not be taken for a ride.

Conflict in Negotiation

Besides personality and negotiation style influencing the negotiation process, the two factors could also impact the likelihood of conflict in negotiation (Hornickle, 2014). For example, an individual who is willing to make false promises could create conflict if the other negotiating party realizes that they are being taken for a ride instead of the opponent applying honesty. Overconfidence and bloated ego or self-esteem could also lead to conflict especially if one party uses their ego to belittle the other (Hornickle, 2014). A person who seeks to compete rather than collaborate will create tension between them and the other party in a negotiation because they will often be on a mission to outdo the other party rather than seek a common ground. When this happens the other party may feel aggrieved and want to fight back. It is, therefore, necessary that parties to a negotiation apply the best style that will work for the process and not disrupt it.

Personal Experience

In everyday life I also find myself having to negotiate on certain things. I have to negotiate on what part of a group assignment to handle, where my group of friends should go for lunch and even where to go for a holiday vacation with my family. In all these situations my personality and negotiation style that I apply largely influence the outcome of the negotiation. Whenever one of our instructors gives us a group assignment, group members have to participate in writing the assignment. An individual’s negotiation skills determine whether they get the hard part or the easy part. I am an influential person in my class and thus I find my personality influencing the process on many occasions where I am given the first priority to pick the part I want to do. In as much as I am influential I like to collaborate with other team members and therefore I rarely cause conflicts in groups. Instead, I help the members to reach an agreement amicably. When involved in a family negotiation process I tend to have little courage especially when my dad is part of the negotiation. I often find myself agreeing with what my dad thinks is good for the family. Personality and negotiation style thus affects me in a similar manner that it affects anyone else who takes part in a negotiation.


An individual’s personality may either influence negotiation process positively or negatively. Personality dictates the negotiation style that an individual uses and this style, in turn, affects the outcome of the process. If the style applied is inappropriate such as dishonesty or bullying, there is a likelihood of conflict between the negotiating parties. Individuals should thus factor in the influence of personality and negotiation style into the whole process of negotiation in order for the process to yield the desired results.


Hornickle, J., (2014). Negotiating Success: Tips and Tools for Building Rapport and Dissolving Conflict While Still Getting What You Want. New Jersey, John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated

Marcus, L. J., Dorn, B. C., & McNulty, E. J. (2012). The walk in the woods: A step-by-step method for facilitating interest-based negotiation and conflict resolution. Negotiation Journal, 28(3), 337-349. Retrieved from Trident University Library

Monich, M. S., & Matveeva, L. V. (2012). Personality determinants of manipulative behavior in the negotiation process. Psychology in Russia, 5, 314-332. Retrieved from Trident University Library

October 12, 2022


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