Leadership Emergence and Gender Roles: A Contextual Examination
Gershenoff, Amy Beth
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Research suggests that gender role, rather than sex, is associated with the perception of individuals as leaders. The current study tests the effect of gender role on leadership emergence by using a pattern approach and manipulating task-type. 200 female undergraduate subjects, categorized based on their personality pattern of three variables (i.e., masculinity, femininity, and intelligence), were placed in groups of four members. Groups were randomly assigned to a consensus building or initiating structure task condition. Hypothesis one, which predicted that feminine-intelligent individuals would emerge more than masculine-intelligent or mixed personality pattern individuals in the consensus building task condition, was not supported. However, support was found for hypothesis two which predicted that masculine-intelligent individuals would be perceived as more leader-like than feminine-intelligent or mixed personality pattern individuals in the initiating structure task. Partial support was found for the emergence of androgynous-intelligent individuals in the consensus building task condition (hypothesis three), but full support was found for the emergence of androgynous-intelligent individuals in the initiating structure task (hypothesis four). The implications of these findings and directions for future research are discussed.
- Masters Theses