Global Resources

Gender-based stereotypes and managerial careers in diverse socio-economic environments: the cases of Greece and Nigeria

Author: D. M. Mihail, Christiana O. Ogbogu
Publisher: International Journal of Business and Social Science
Publication Date: Feb 2016

In most parts of the world, the workplace has persistently reproduced gender segregation, wage inequality, sex discrimination, sexual harassment and under-representation of women in key management positions. As women have made gains in terms of employment and career-building, focus has grown with regard to women’s status at management level, with women still disproportionately limited to occupying the lower rungs of most organisations. This study, published in the International Journal of Business and Social Science, investigates the issue by examining business students’ attitudes towards women’s ability to lead as managers in two countries with diverse socio-economic environments: Nigeria and Greece. The study identifies and assesses factors that shape these attitudes through the use of a structured questionnaire administered to over 300 students in each country.

The results of the survey were statistically analysed to ascertain the significance of negative, stereotyped attitudes held by students, and how the findings from each country compare. Results reveal that male business students in both countries expressed negative stereotypic attitudes towards women as managers, compared to their female counterparts. Gender emerged as the single most significant source of stereotypic attitudes regarding women’s ability to take up managerial responsibilities in both countries, leading the authors to propose that the ‘think manager-think male’ attitude is a global phenomenon consistent with gender-centered perspective. Given the dearth of research on stereotyping and how it relates to women’s career prospects in Greece and Nigeria, the authors hope that this study will contribute to debate on the issue of empirically analysing stereotypic attitudes toward women as managers.