Supervisor-Subordinate Conflict Negotiation

By: ​Piyawan Charoensap-Kelly  

Guided by the core concerns framework, communication accommodation theory, and gender role research, this quasi-experimental study examines the interplay of core concerns accommodative-ness, gender roles, perceived goodwill, emotion, and intended negotiation behavior in supervisor-subordinate conflict negotiation. A core concerns message is defined as a message that addresses one or more of the five core concerns (i.e., basic social and psychological needs including appreciation, affiliation, autonomy, status, and role) that often underlie a conflict. Specifically, the study explores employees’ positive emotion and intended negotiation behavior when their male versus female managers delivered a core concerns message to them under-accommodatingly, accommodatingly, and over-accommodatingly. The research also examines how employees’ perceptions of the managers’ goodwill might mediate the effects of the core concerns accommodative-ness and its outcomes. Results showed that core concerns accommodative-ness has a positive linear relationship with integrative intention (i.e., the tendency to seek win-win solutions) and positive emotion, and a U-shaped curvilinear relationship with distributive intention (i.e., the tendency to seek win-lose solutions). Also, goodwill mediates the linear relationship between accommodative-ness and positive emotion. Male managers’ accommodative-ness has no direct relationship with integration but an indirect relationship through goodwill. However, for male managers, accommodative-ness has a Bell-shaped curvilinear relationship with integration and U-shaped curvilinear relationship with distribution. For female managers, accommodative-ness has direct relationship with emotion and integration regardless of perceived goodwill. Female managers’ accommodative-ness also has a U-shaped curvilinear relationship (approaching significant) with distribution but not as strong as in male managers. Practical and theoretical implications will be discussed.

Supervisor-Subordinate, Conflict Negotiation, Core Concerns
Management Education
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

​Piyawan Charoensap-Kelly

The University of Alabama in Huntsville and University of Southern Mississippi, United States
United States