Why do women have less desire for leadership positions than men?

 There is a clear gender gap in pay, promotions and even pensions for working women, but research shows that there are also differences in the aspirations and desire to advance between men and women today.


This happens when women do not have the same desire or ambition to advance in their fields as men do, and this factor hampers efforts to encourage women to reach key positions in various fields. can affect

In recent years, the global campaign for social equality in society has been underpinned by ongoing research that has revealed how women are underrepresented in leadership or key positions in the business world.

For example, recent research shows that while the proportion of women in senior management or top management positions is gradually increasing, the 'leaky pipeline' effect means that fewer women are in companies. I reach high positions.

This situation has forced policymakers and business leaders to take steps to diversify in an effort to redress the balance.

Because this research shows that organizations or companies with more women in senior or key positions have better financial performance, as well as wider economic benefits for women in society by ensuring women's advancement to senior positions. can be realized by exploiting its full economic potential.

These steps have been taken to eliminate bias at various stages from recruitment to promotions. Some companies also adopt flexible work rules such as telecommuting facilities. Creating an environment of inclusion and mutual harmony can also help. For example, by implementing mentoring and counseling programs.

The goal of increasing women's participation in leadership positions is undoubtedly well-intentioned. But when implementing these diversity initiatives, business leaders need to think about whether women also want to be involved in these leadership roles.

At the moment, many women don't actually aspire to be leaders, a study I completed with Kay Leah Shepard of Washington State University in the US and Tatina Belushkina of the University of Milano-Bicocca in Italy.

Our analysis of research comparing men's and women's aspirations for leadership and management positions shows that men have a greater desire or passion to reach leadership positions than women. We looked at six decades of research with a final sample of more than 138,000 US participants. We also created a hypothetical organization based on these results, which showed that in a company with eight hierarchical levels, the gender gap in leadership aspirations was 2.13 men for every woman at the highest organizational level.

According to our research, differences in aspirations emerge around college age. This is when many people get their first experience of working life through an internship or a temporary summer job. We also came to know that each sector has its own importance. The gender desirability gap can certainly be seen in female-dominated fields such as nursing and education, but it is more pronounced in more mixed and male-dominated fields such as politics and business.

Even as serious efforts are being made to achieve diversity in society, especially in the last decade, our analysis shows that the gender gap in leadership aspirations has remained the same over the past 60 years. This may suggest that, either, existing diversity initiatives do not address women's concerns about these responsibilities, or that initiatives are too general and need to be tailored to women's specific needs. .

Our research shows that company diversification initiatives are not proving effective. Therefore, business leaders and managers have to take into account the real aspirations of women to improve these initiatives. A good start would be to try to understand the specific reasons behind female employees' disinterest, especially in male-dominated environments.

Although we were not able to explain the difference in desire, we believe that it may be related to personality traits. It occurs when individuals confine themselves to traditional gender concepts, voluntarily putting the shell of gender norms on themselves.

For women, this means having a stereotype imposed on them, which makes them think of themselves as less than a leader. Not surprisingly, such women do not aspire to leadership positions. On the other hand, men embrace the traditional notion of male superiority, which makes them think that they can have more control over themselves and others. It also fits with the stereotype people often associate with leaders.

Of course, other explanations are possible. This may include women who face more negative experiences in the workplace such as prejudice and discrimination, which makes them aspire to higher positions.

It is also possible that women worry that accepting a leadership position and the responsibility that comes with it may negatively impact their family life. For example, women often have more power when it comes to decision-making in the home. So much so, that they are less interested in gaining power in the workplace.

Any effort to empower women should begin with specific and targeted interventions such as developing mentoring schemes or highlighting examples. Organizations should also focus on women who demonstrate leadership potential early in their careers and provide them with useful resources and support to progress upward through the organization. Our findings suggest that interventions to increase women's leadership aspirations should ideally take place before or during college. Women at this stage of their careers can especially benefit from having the opportunity to see and interact with women who are already in leadership positions.

It is possible to create gender diversity initiatives that will do more to increase the number of women reaching the upper echelons of business. And making room for more women to move into leadership positions is not only fair, it can also have a positive impact on the company.

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