Gender in Negotiations: A Motivated Social Cognitive Analysis
With these criticisms in mind, we try to dispel the misperception that gender is irrelevant for understanding bargaining behavior. At least two reasons speak to why the perception that gender has relatively little explanatory power in negotiations is inaccurate. First, even gender differences in negotiation behavior and outcomes that are small in magnitude add up to very large amounts over time because these differences accumulate. Martell, Lane, and Emrich (1996), using a simulation approach, show that even if gender explains only 1% of the variation in performance evaluations, this difference has a large negative impact on the proportion of women who end up at senior levels in an organization. Likewise, gender differences in the initiation of a negotiation at the beginning of a career can add up to more than a half-million dollars in lost income over a
lifetime (Babcock & Laschever, 2003). Therefore, even gender differences that seem small in magnitude may have a large meaningful impact on gender differences in outcomes.