Gender stereotyping and self-stereotyping among Danish managers

Nina Smith*, Tor Eriksson, Valdemar Smith

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe how gender stereotypes and self-stereotypes of Danish managers vary among managers at different job levels, from lower level managers to CEO level, in a large survey of Danish private-sector managers. Design/methodology/approach: This study is explorative. Measures of stereotypes and self-stereotypes are constructed and analyzed with regressions models that control for a large number of individual and firm characteristics. Findings: The results document significant gender differences in stereotyping among managers. Male managers have significantly more masculine stereotypes of successful leaders, and they rate themselves higher on masculine traits than female managers. For CEOs, the picture is different. Stereotypes do not differ by gender and female CEOs have more pronounced masculine stereotypes than female managers at lower levels. Female managers at the age of 50 are the least gender stereotyping managers. Younger female managers have significantly more masculine stereotypes about the role as a successful leader. Research limitations/implications: This study is based on cross-sectional data and does not claim to uncover causal relationships. Practical implications: The results suggest that gender stereotypes and self-stereotypes among Danish private-sector managers are not going to change quickly indicating that new government policies with more focus on gender equalization and affirmative actions are called for. Originality/value: Most earlier studies of stereotypes concerning female managers are based on studies of samples drawn from the general population or consisting of students. This study makes use of a large sample of managerial employees from all levels of the corporate hierarchy in different types of firms.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGender in Management: An International Journal
Pages (from-to)622-639
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


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