The three faces of Eve: Strategic displays of positive, negative, and neutral emotions in negotiations

Shirli Kopelman*, Ashleigh Shelby Rosette, Leigh Thompson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

293 Scopus citations


In a series of laboratory experiments, we tested the influence of strategically displaying positive, negative, and neutral emotions on negotiation outcomes. In Experiment 1, a face-to-face dispute simulation, negotiators who displayed positive emotion, in contrast to negative or neutral emotions, were more likely to incorporate a future business relationship in the negotiated contract. In Experiment 2, an ultimatum setting, managers strategically displaying positive emotion were more likely to close a deal. This effect was mediated by negotiators' willingness to pay more to a negotiator strategically displaying positive versus negative emotions. In Experiment 3, display of positive emotion was a more effective strategy for gaining concessions from the other party in a distributive setting. Negotiators made more extreme demands when facing a negotiator strategically displaying negative, rather than positive or neutral, emotions. Implications for strategic display of emotion in negotiations are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-101
Number of pages21
JournalOrganizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006


  • Affect
  • Dispute resolution
  • Distributive gains
  • Emotion
  • Negotiation
  • Relationships
  • Strategy
  • Ultimatum bargaining

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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