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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2020

Reena Biju and Atul Arun Pathak

Faced with dynamic and challenging environments, organizations today expect all their leaders, including their women leaders, to be highly intrapreneurial. However…

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Abstract

Purpose

Faced with dynamic and challenging environments, organizations today expect all their leaders, including their women leaders, to be highly intrapreneurial. However, intrapreneurship is traditionally perceived to be a masculine activity. In order to appear intrapreneurial, women leaders consciously behave like men and suppress their feminine characteristics. This results in “emotional labor” that causes undue stress, emotional exhaustion, and burnout. Organizations can help intrapreneurial women leaders succeed by a combination of gender-related sensitization, focused training, setting up sharing and communication platforms, encouraging self-support groups and providing formal and informal mentorship to their women employees.

Design/methodology/approach

We carried out qualitative research which involved 31 in depth semi-structured in-person interviews (including 11 repeat interviews) with 20 women leaders from seven large organizations from the Indian IT industry. The interviewees had 15 years of average work experience, were in the 35-50 years age group, and held senior management functional or project management responsibilities. The interviews were typically 60 minutes each. The researcher took detailed notes, and subsequently, manually carried out multiple levels and multiple rounds of coding (initially open-coding followed by focused coding) to identify and abstract the themes and categories.

Findings

Our study identified that women leaders who are expected to behave as intrapreneurs, face “emotional labor” which results in stress, emotional exhaustion and burnout. To help women leaders succeed, a well-defined set of organizational interventions including gender sensitization, training, sharing & communication platforms, self-support groups, and formal and informal mentoring are useful.

Research limitations/implications

To increase the generalizability of our study beyond the Indian cultural context and beyond the IT industry, future researchers may carry out both qualitative and larger sample quantitative studies in other countries, and draw upon data from multiple industries. The issues arising out of emotional labor of women intrapreneurial leaders are likely to be present in a wide range of industries and cultural contexts. However, there may be nuanced contextual differences that need further exploration. Future research can build on our findings and explore moderators, contingencies, and boundary conditions that affect the suitability of organizational interventions that we have suggested.

Practical implications

Emotional well-being of women intrapreneurial leaders would help them take innovative organizational initiatives, and make the organization strategically agile. To help women leaders be intrapreneurial, organizations need many interventions and need to provide the required supporting infrastructure.

Social implications

Ways to resolve gender-related issues in workplaces are suggested.

Originality/value

Our study is valuable as it simultaneously considers two strategic organizational objectives of intrapreneurship and gender diversity of leadership teams. The paper provides useful prescriptions for organizations to help women intrapreneurial leaders succeed. This will help organizations that are facing dynamic external environments become innovative and strategically agile.

Details

Development and Learning in Organizations: An International Journal, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7282

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 9 August 2016

Nancy J. Adler and Joyce S. Osland

Whereas most societal commentators continue to review the historical patterns of men’s leadership in search of models for 21st-century success, few have begun to…

Abstract

Whereas most societal commentators continue to review the historical patterns of men’s leadership in search of models for 21st-century success, few have begun to recognize, let alone appreciate, the equivalent patterns of women’s leadership and the future contributions that women could potentially make as leaders. What could and are women bringing to society as global leaders? Why at this moment in history is there such a marked increase in the number of women leaders? Are we entering an era in which both male and female leaders will shape history, both symbolically and in reality? And if so, will we discover that women, on average, lead in different ways than men, or will we learn that role (global leader) explains more than gender? This chapter reveals the accelerating trends of women joining men in senior leadership positions, establishes the relationship of women leaders to our overall understanding of global leadership, and sets forth an agenda to accomplish much needed research and understanding.

Book part
Publication date: 5 October 2020

Bulent Akkaya and Sema Üstgörül

Female leader is a major topic in the male of today that’s hardly getting attention. World today needs women in more positions of leadership. Today’s organizations need…

Abstract

Female leader is a major topic in the male of today that’s hardly getting attention. World today needs women in more positions of leadership. Today’s organizations need effective and agile leaders who understand the complexities of the rapidly changing global environment. This situation requires urgent attention as the world needs female as well as male characteristics to address global issues. Women represent half of the modern world’s abilities and population. They are important for economic and social prosperity for the world. Women carry a viewpoint that respects not only competitiveness but also organizational and team cooperation. Their female ideals are a functioning structure of new, cooperative and open economy. Eventually, the leadership of women will not only boost business, family and culture, but also the environment that will become more prosperous and peaceful as a result. In today’s modern world many researches are conducted on global, social and cultural forces, such as globalization, e-commerce, changing markets, the spread of technology and the need for teamwork, alliances and partnerships, show a high need for women leaders. But what is the role and leadership style of female leaders here? In this context, the purpose of this study is to discuss the leadership styles and what kind of leadership style female managers exhibit in line with the literature. The research showed that female managers have more agile leadership qualities and the authors suggested that female leaders should be brought forward for the opportunity to lead others toward a better future.

Details

Agile Business Leadership Methods for Industry 4.0
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-381-6

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 15 September 2021

Corinne Brion and Alfred Ampah-Mensah

This study examined how cultural factors positively or negatively influenced women's access to the principal role and influenced their leadership experiences. The…

Abstract

Purpose

This study examined how cultural factors positively or negatively influenced women's access to the principal role and influenced their leadership experiences. The researchers used Hofstede (2011) six dimensions of national culture as a conceptual framework. The Hofstede (2011) model of national culture consists of six dimensions (6D) that the investigators utilized to interpret and code the data. This framework allowed the researchers to comprehend the impact of cultural norms and values on women leaders and how women leaders work within those behavioral patterns. Utilizing this framework to map women educational leaders' experiences provided nuances in the dimensions within this region.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a qualitative research paradigm and a phenomenological approach, this study explored the experiences of 12 women principals in the Komenda Edina Eguafo Abrem District (KEEA) of the Central Region of Ghana. The phenomenological approach is represented in cultural and social experiences. It enables researchers to describe the meaning of individuals' experiences (Creswell, 2007). This approach helped the researchers describe the participants' perceptions and experiences as Ghanaian women school leaders. This study sought to answer the following research questions: What are the experiences of women principals in Ghanaian K-12 public schools? What challenges do these women encounter in their work as principals? What support exists for these women to effectively execute their leadership roles? A criterion sampling was used to select principals. Data collection included one-on-one in-depth interviews and field notes.

Findings

Findings revealed that these women navigated cultural norms and beliefs in order to exercise their own leadership style and pursue their careers in education. These women leaders were also able to gradually change the teachers' and community members' mindsets on women and leadership.

Research limitations/implications

This study took place with 12 women within one district in one region of Ghana. While this is a limited sample, this study is significant because it increased one's understanding of how women leaders in patriarchal societies navigate cultural beliefs and norms in order to execute their responsibilities. This study informs educational reforms on gender equity and leadership preparation programmes and sheds light on culturally informed leadership practices unique to women.

Practical implications

Based on the study's findings, the researchers offer some recommendations for practitioners, policy makers and scholars.

Social implications

Given the global call to promote equity in all aspects of social, economic and public life, the question is not whether we should support women educational leaders but rather how we can better support these professionals navigate cultural norms embedded in patriarchal and traditional societies.

Originality/value

Currently, majority of scholarly articles written on the experiences of women educational leaders come from South Africa (Diko, 2014; Mestry and Schmidt, 2012; Moorosi, 2010). In Ghana, quantitative studies have focused on factors accounting for gender disparity in education leadership in specific districts (Segkulu and Gyimah, 2016) and stereotypical perceptions of women principals (Pwadura, 2016). However, there are a limited number of qualitative studies that explore the experiences of women principals. This study is designed to fill this knowledge gap by employing a qualitative design to explore the experiences of 12 women school principals located in the KEEA municipality in the Central Region of Ghana. Thus, the gap in knowledge that this study seeks to bridge is both methodological – in terms of the use of a qualitative approach – and topical – in terms of exploring the experiences of female principals.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 35 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 20 October 2020

Lynn R. Offermann, Lauren A. Lanzo, Kira O. Foley and Taniyia J. Harvey

Given continuing gender inequality in the upper echelons of organizations, women's leadership aspirations and orientations are of significant research interest…

Abstract

Purpose

Given continuing gender inequality in the upper echelons of organizations, women's leadership aspirations and orientations are of significant research interest. Controversy remains as to whether today's “Millennial” college women approach work with different leadership aspirations and attitudes than previous generational cohorts. This study compares the leadership and achievement orientations of college women leaders from 1985 to 2015, along with peer comparators from 2015.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were obtained from attendees at a conference for college women leaders in 1985 and 2015; male and female comparators were surveyed in 2015.

Findings

Comparing 1985 and 2015 cohorts of college women leaders suggests both similarity and change, as well as differences between women leaders and their male and female peers. Women leaders from 2015 demonstrated no differences in intrinsic direct achievement, lower self-esteem and higher power apprehension and lower levels of leadership motivation compared to the 1985 cohort. Millennial women leaders reported higher intrinsic direct and power direct achievement than male and female peers, with men higher on competitive achievement than either female group. Millennial women were more concerned about workplace gender equity, about sharing household responsibilities and were more favorable toward using external childcare while working compared to male peers.

Practical implications

Implications for developing young women with leadership potential are discussed.

Originality/value

These results make a strong contribution to understanding the leadership aspirations, achievement orientations and work–life expectations of the next generation of organizational leaders.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 36 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 October 2019

Tamer Koburtay, Jawad Syed and Radi Haloub

Informed by the role congruity theory of prejudice towards female leaders, this paper aims to review the literature on gender and leadership to consolidate existing theory…

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Abstract

Purpose

Informed by the role congruity theory of prejudice towards female leaders, this paper aims to review the literature on gender and leadership to consolidate existing theory development, stimulate new thinking and provide a framework for future empirical studies. It offers a theoretical framework to understand what may prevent or facilitate the emergence of female leaders.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reviews and synthesises recent research on the linkages between gender and leadership.

Findings

The review extends Eagly and Karau’s (2002) role congruity theory by identifying additional constructs that may alleviate negative prejudicial evaluations and offering new insights into the potential alignment between feminine traits and leadership success.

Practical implications

The theoretical framework that emerged in this paper may be used as a heuristic model to contextually examine the lack of female leaders.

Originality/value

The paper proposes a theoretical framework to understand issues related to the emergence of female leaders. It offers news insights into possible alignment in female-leader role stereotypes that may address prejudicial evaluations against female leaders.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 31 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 30 November 2018

Asif Hussain Samo, Sarah Wali Qazi and Wafa Mansoor Buriro

The purpose of this paper is to discover stereotypical beliefs of followers about female leadership and their possible outcomes in an organizational setting.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discover stereotypical beliefs of followers about female leadership and their possible outcomes in an organizational setting.

Design/methodology/approach

With phenomenological methodology, this study used a qualitative approach, and credible data were gathered through semi-structured interviews from the employees of the education industry of Pakistan. Stereotypical beliefs and their outcomes were extracted through thematic analysis.

Findings

The results show that female leaders are considered less fit for leadership role, which results in a reluctance in followership, the gap in communication and ineffective performance. Followers also tend to believe that women are less fit for pressure, resulting in a lack of trust and an intergroup conflict. The third stereotype that emerged from the results is that women are considered less fit for professionalism, which culminates in personal expectations, adverse effect on tasks and miscommunications.

Research limitations/implications

This study is confined to the local context, and the results suggest that while female leaders are mild and a personal approach may have a positive effect on followers but in Pakistani society, they are considered less fit for an overall leadership role. Moreover, these stereotypes breed prejudgment and overshadow women’s identity as leaders. This paves the way forward for further exploratory inquiry of female leadership and the empirical test of these stereotypes and their outcomes.

Practical implications

This study is a standpoint for organizations, present and potential female leaders to be conscious of existing stereotypes and their dire outcomes. It can also be used in government policymaking for initiatives to mitigate these stereotypes to harvest diversity and female empowerment. The leading leadership trainers of Pakistan can also be benefited from the contextual scientific information about female leadership.

Social implications

A society like that of Pakistan, which is striving to mitigate the gender inequality gap in every walk of life, needs to scientifically know the assumptions in the minds of people regarding women. The present study serves this purpose for women in a leadership capacity in an organizational setting.

Originality/value

This study is the first of its kind in the local context and paves the way for further research in diversity in leadership.

Details

Management Research Review, vol. 42 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8269

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 April 2015

Kenneth S. Rhee and Tracey H. Sigler

– The purpose of this study is to empirically explore the perceptions of leader effectiveness and preference on gender and leadership style.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to empirically explore the perceptions of leader effectiveness and preference on gender and leadership style.

Design/methodology/approach

The interaction between authoritarian and participative leadership style and gender roles was examined for effectiveness and preference using video samples of dramatized leaders.

Findings

The results showed that although subjects found participatory leaders to be more effective and also preferred such a style over authoritarian leaders, male leaders were rated to be more effective and more preferred over female leaders. Women leaders who go against their gender stereotype were perceived as even less effective and less preferred than male leaders who exhibited the same style that was identified as a more masculine style.

Research limitations/implications

The results suggest that women leaders continue to face challenges overcoming both sexual bias and stereotypes. Women leaders, regardless of style, face an uphill battle in terms of perceptions of effectiveness and preference regardless of who their followers might be. In addition, women leaders who go against the typical gender stereotype might be penalized even more.

Practical implications

Despite making progress on gender equity, the study demonstrated the continuing existence of sexual stereotyping and bias in people’s perceptions, even with “younger” subjects. Thus, we need to maintain our focus on actively changing the rules of the workplace (e.g. a recent Harvard Business School experiment) and changing the status quo. Until we level the playing field, we need to continue to play an active role in creating an organizational culture and shaping an environment that is fair and equitable.

Originality/value

This paper highlights the current status of gender bias and stereotyping using an innovative methodology of video case studies. The results also highlight the persistence of gender bias and stereotype even in a “neutral” setting with the younger subjects. In addition, the paper empirically demonstrates the double standards women often face in the workplace. Women leaders have often been expected to demonstrate more masculine traits at workplace (as exhibited by the authoritarian style), but when they do, they are penalized for acting out of their gender role.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 December 2019

Shannon Sales, Monica Galloway Burke and Colin Cannonier

This paper aims to examine women leaders from diverse career backgrounds and ethnicities to discover their perspectives of their leadership roles and empowerment to…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine women leaders from diverse career backgrounds and ethnicities to discover their perspectives of their leadership roles and empowerment to determine similarities and differences among them, focusing on the perspectives of African American women.

Design/methodology/approach

The review process began with a comprehensive review of African American women in history in the context of leadership and empowerment. Next, a Q-sort methodology was used as a semi-qualitative approach for women leaders to rank words of empowerment and facilitate discussions among these women. The Q methodology is known for exploring issues that are correlated with individuals who are influenced with personal feelings and opinions.

Findings

The paper concludes that perceptions of leadership roles differ among the African American women leaders when compared to other ethnicities. The results support the idea that women from diverse ethnic backgrounds have different experiences in the workplace, and these experiences influence how they identify factors they perceive as beneficial to them in terms of their perspectives on leadership and empowerment. Several themes emerged for African American women leaders including being overlooked, marginalized, undervalued and unappreciated in their professions as leaders due to their dual minority status. As it is now as it was in the past, such barriers can deter or stop progression for African American women leaders.

Originality/value

The history of African American women in leadership roles is scantily recognized or not recognized at all. This paper highlights leadership roles and barriers for African American women currently in leadership roles in contrast to other women. The issues they face are still similar to those faced by African American women in earlier decades in spite of increased career mobility. A relatively understudied topic in leadership and management history in general, this paper provides a unique lens from which to build awareness about the leadership roles and empowerment of African American women and to effect needed change.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 26 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1348

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 October 2010

Sharon Mavin, Patricia Bryans and Rosie Cunningham

The purpose of this paper is to highlight gendered media constructions which discourage women's acceptability as political leaders and trivialise or ignore their contribution.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to highlight gendered media constructions which discourage women's acceptability as political leaders and trivialise or ignore their contribution.

Design/methodology/approach

Media analysis of UK newspapers, government web sites, worldwide web relating to the UK 2010 government election, women MPs and in particular representations of Harriet Harman and Theresa May.

Findings

Media constructions of UK women political leaders are gendered and powerful in messaging women's (un)acceptability as leaders against embedded stereotypes. Being invisible via tokenism and yet spotlighted on the basis of their gender, media constructions trivialize their contribution, thus detracting from their credibility as leaders.

Research limitations/implications

UK‐based study grounded in opportune “snapshot” media analysis during election and resultant formation of UK coalition Government. Focus on two women political leaders, results may not be generalisable.

Practical implications

Raises awareness of the numerical minority status of UK women political leaders, the invisibility‐visibility contradiction and the power of the media to construct women leaders against gender stereotypes. Call for continued challenge to gendered leader stereotypes and women's representation in UK political leadership.

Originality/value

Highlights power of media to perpetuate gender stereotypes of UK women political leaders.

Details

Gender in Management: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-2413

Keywords

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