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The Turkish Super League meets its first female club president

Efe Ünsal (Department of Management, Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey)
Sanem Kaptanoğlu (Department of Management, Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey)
Hayat Kabasakal (Department of Management, Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey)

Publication date: 21 May 2021


Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes are as follows. First, female managers can face gender inequity in different forms, such as the glass ceiling and glass cliff, while they run for leadership positions, especially in male-dominated business contexts. Second, managers can show high performance and be effective leaders as long as they are aware of that all managers are evaluated according to a wide variety of criteria, and play many different managerial roles, such as interpersonal, informational and decisional roles. Finally, managers should pay attention to all stakeholders’ demands in decision-making process for sustainability and performing better in the long run.

Case overview/synopsis

Since football began gaining popularity in Turkey at the dawn of the 20th century, the sport remains the most popular national sport today. However, recently, a new name has shaken the world of Turkish football: Berna Gozbasi, the first female football manager in Turkish history. In the middle of 2019–2020 football season, Gozbasi became the first female club president after she assumed leadership of Kayserispor. Kayserispor was officially founded as a Turkish professional football club in 1966, and, as its name suggests, was based in Kayseri, a sizeable industrialised city located in Central Anatolia. The team competes in the “Turkish Super League”, Turkey’s top football competition. In this case, to discuss gender inequity, leadership, and management in the sport context, the authors explained the dilemma Gozbasi faced while she decided whether or not to accept this challenging role. Then, the authors examined the experiences she gained as a leader and the dilemma she faced to diminish the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the organisation she led.

Complexity academic level

Undergraduate and MBA students.

Supplementary materials

Teaching Notes are available for educators only. Please contact your library to gain login details or email to request teaching notes.

Subject code

CSS 6: Human Resource Management.



Disclaimer. This case is written solely for educational purposes and is not intended to represent successful or unsuccessful managerial decision-making. The authors may have disguised names; financial and other recognisable information to protect confidentiality.


Ünsal, E., Kaptanoğlu, S. and Kabasakal, H. (2021), "The Turkish Super League meets its first female club president", , Vol. 11 No. 2.



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