Women better suited to leadership

Emma Walmsley succeeds Andrew Witty as GSK chief executive when he retires on 31 March
Photo: GSK

Women are better leaders than their male colleagues, according to research.

Professor Øyvind L Martinsen, head of leadership and organisational behaviour at the BI Norwegian Business School in Oslo, together with colleague Professor Lars Glasø, surveyed the personality traits of more than 2,900 managers and found that female leaders scored higher than men in most of the five categories measured.

Female leaders may falter through their stronger tendency to worry – or lower emotional stability. However, this does not negate the fact that they are decidedly more suited to management positions than their male counterparts” – Lars Glasø

Women ranked higher in four categories: initiative and clear communication; openness and ability to innovate; sociability and supportiveness; and methodical management and goal setting.

Martinsen said: “Our results indicate that women naturally rank higher, in general, than men in their abilities to innovate and lead with clarity and impact.

“These findings pose a legitimate question about the construction of management hierarchy and the current dispensation of women in these roles.”

However, the research did indicate that women are less emotionally stable than men and are less able to withstand job-related pressure and stress.

Glasø commented: “The survey suggests that female leaders may falter through their stronger tendency to worry – or lower emotional stability.

“However, this does not negate the fact that they are decidedly more suited to management positions than their male counterparts. If decision-makers ignore this truth, they could effectively be employing less qualified leaders and impairing productivity.”

Next week sees the introduction of gender pay gap reporting, which for many employers will highlight the lack of senior women in their management structure.

One Response to Women better suited to leadership

  1. David Aucoin 20 Jun 2018 at 1:22 am #

    It is unfortunate that society seems to feel that they have to compare men and women in every way possible. The marginalization of the male gender seems to be very prominent in society today. It reminds me of the old mother goose rhyme. “What are little boys made of? snail and puppy dog tails. And what are little girls made of? sugar and spices and all things nieces!

    What a terrible thing for our nations boys to get the impression that girls are made of better stuff. One can be pretty sure that if it were the girls that were said to be made of snails and puppy dog tails there would be a mass mobilization of the women’s movement proclaiming the poem was sexism and unfair to the nation’s daughters but there was no such cry ever sprang up when its ours boys being marginalized.

    Same thing has happened in education. There was a time when boys excelled over girls. The women’s movement marshaled their forces and shouted to society that if one gender out performed the other in education that gender would out compete for the best paying jobs and that isn’t fair to our nations daughters for they will be relegated to second class citizenship”. As a result of the reforms the girls are now out performing the boys. When girls were behind they blamed the system not the girls but now its the boys that are behind they are blaming the boys not the system.

    Its the same whenever women are behind that they scream they want equality and parity with males whenever they are behind but when women get ahead they no longer talk about parity when talking about that subject when they have gotten ahead but go on to some other area in which they are behind and talk about parity with males.

    It is particularly disturbing to read all these studies proclaiming women make better leaders than men. Do they not realize how dangerous this is? What if society were to except this as true? As a society we should want the best people to be leaders. These studies are saying most if not all of our leaders should be women.

    Have we thought ahead of what this would do to the male gender. Are we suppose to just move over and let the women rule the world? It is not in the DNA of the male gender to let that happen. Besides there is evidence that the earliest of civilization were matriarchy. If they were so good where are they now? Why were they over thrown and patriarchy established in their place. What I am saying here is that we have seen this movie before why repeat it?

    If it were to be true that women make better leaders than men wouldn’t it better to borrow Thomas Jefferson’s dictum “Let these truths be self evident” Besides its counter productive to publish studies saying women make better leaders.Why? Because men are the majority at the present time who are in position to promote people to leadership. If you tell the promoter that you are better than he is he isn’t likely to promote you. Why? Its called self-preservation.

    the more you inform men that women make better leaders than men the less likely it is that male promoters will promote women for fear of losing their own leadership position to the one they promoted! How likely is that? Men aren’t that stupid! These studies have been being published for decades yet women still lag far behind. This is the evidence that what I have just written is true.

    A better way to increase the number of women in leadership is stop threatening male promoters with all these studies showing how inferior men are. How? Say it like this. We need more female leaders not because women are better leaders but because women think differently than men which creates diversity which diversity leads to greater productivity. Said this way male promoters won’t be threatened. Why they might even get promoted themselves for having the wisdom to promote more women thus creating diversity which has increased his companies’ productivity. No leader ever got fired or passed over for creating greater productivity.

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