Investigating gender-role, self-concept and physical appearance as moderators of gender stereotypic leadership attribution

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Authors
Gilhooly, Noreen
Issue Date
2009
Degree
BA in Psychology
Publisher
Dublin Business School
Rights
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Abstract
This study aimed to investigate if sex-roles, physical appearance and self-concept moderate the attribution of leadership competency. The pervasiveness of ‘think manager think male’ (Schein, 2001) and ‘what is beautiful is good’ (Dion, 1972) stereotypes in the Irish organisational arena were explored. The Bern Sex-Role Inventory (1974), the Schein 92-item descriptive index, the Self-Attributes Questionnaire (Pelham & Swann, 1989) and 7 questions on 4 photographic stimuli (2 male, 2 female) were completed by 109 participants online. Results indicated sex-role and physical appearance as influential in the attribution of leadership competence but not self-concept. More feminine females engendered the masculine leader stereotype, but leadership was otherwise undifferentiated by masculinity or femininity. Attractiveness was more pervasive for effective leadership attribution than masculinity.
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