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Women in management in New Zealand: a study of biographical data, managerial style and sex role self-concept

In New Zealand, women form three point nine percent (3.9%) of the managerial population. In considering this overall lack of women in management and accepting that both males and females possess equal potential for developing management expertise, the three areas selected for investigation in this study of one hundred and thirty female managers are biographical information, managerial style and sex role self concept. The biographical information was directed at eliciting life history items pertaining to those areas of development and experience likely to provide predictors of managerial effectiveness. The critical factor is the development of an internalized locus of control, in that the girl who perceives herself as controlling and mastering her adolescent environment is likely to become the woman who succeeds in management. Across all occupational and managerial function groupings and when managing a female staff, a high relationship - low task managerial style was used by the majority of the women managers, but those women managing men used a high relationship - high task style. This style shift indicated female managers capability of synthesizing managerial style with subordinates expectations. The majority of the women managers in this sample presented an androgynous self-concept, implying a high degree of acceptance of both male and female qualities. While these women accepted their femininity, they also endorsed the assertive action oriented cluster of characteristics stereotypically attributed to males.
Type of thesis
The University of Waikato
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