The effect of individual differences on stereotypes of male and female managers
Most studies of stereotyping of male and female managers have focused on the content of stereotypes in terms of trait descriptors (e.g., Schein, 1973, 1975; Brenner, Tomkiewicz, & Schein, 1989; Heilman, Block, & Martell, 1995; Dodge, Gilroy, & Fenzel, 1995; Deal & Stevenson, 1998) or in terms of consideration and initiation of structure (e.g., Russell, Rush, & Herd, 1988). Perceptions of gender differences in transformational leadership have been less studied (see Maher, 1997 and Martell & DeSmet, 2001 for exceptions). Given the recent popularity of the transformational leadership paradigm, this is an area that warrants further investigation (Butterfield & Grinnell, 1999). The present study examined stereotypes of male and female managers in terms of transformational, transactional, and laissez-faire leadership dimensions using a diagnostic ratio measurement strategy. The use of the diagnostic ratio approach is conducive to the study of both content and strength of stereotypes and the effect of individual differences on stereotyping, which is the second major focus of this research. Little attention has been paid to characteristics of the perceiver, other than gender, that are associated with stereotypes of male and female leaders. The results of this study showed that males and females differ in the content of their stereotypes of male and female managers, but not in the strength of those stereotypes. In general, males perceived that male managers possess more of the characteristics typically associated with effective leadership, whereas females perceived that female managers are more likely to display the attributes and behaviors typically associated with effective leadership. Other individual differences, power and implicit person theory, were also investigated but were found not to be related to stereotype strength. This study adds to the leadership literature by broadening the focus of research on perceptions of managers to include a full range of leaders' attributes and by going beyond the examination of gender differences in perceptions of managers to include other individual difference variables.
|Year of publication:||
|Authors:||Bajdo, Linda M|
Wayne State University
|Type of publication:||Other|
ETD Collection for Wayne State University
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