ERIC Number: ED334511
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Dec
Gender Differences in the Development of Managers: How Women Managers Learn from Experience.
Van Velsor, Ellen; Hughes, Martha W.
This study investigated gender differences associated with experiential learning. The data come from two studies of general management level men and women. The first, conducted between 1981 and 1984, involved 189 men and 2 women, and utilized interviews and questionnaires. In 1984-85, a second study interviewed 76 women. In each study, managers were asked to report key events that influenced them as managers. Even though these men and women were at similar organizational levels when interviewed, the differences in the learning they most frequently reported suggests the women were focused on discovering who they were as individuals in these organizations, on finding their niche, and on integrating self with environment. The men appeared to be focused on the mastery of more specific business skills. These differences may be due to women having less organizational experience and not having as clear an idea about the criteria for a good manager. The impact of these factors may be enhanced by the isolation women feel, especially at higher levels of management. Factors such as organizational experience, newcomer or minority status, the need to define sex-role appropriate behavior, isolation, and discrimination create a working environment more complex in its challenges for women. A comparative analysis of the key developmental events emerging from this study is included. (LLL)
Publications, Center for Creative Leadership, P.O. Box 26300, Greensboro, NC 27438-6300 (Stock #145R; $30.00 each).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: American Express Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, NC.