In What Situations Are Women Leaders the Most Effective?

CorinnePostweb_1A new study by Corinne Post, an associate professor of management at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, examines when women are the most effective leaders in business settings. Dr. Post looked at leadership of organizations within 29 different research and development companies.”It’s unlikely that woman are always better leaders,” Dr. Post said. “My question was, in what type of contexts would they be more likely to make positive difference.”

Dr. Post found that women were the most effective as leaders in unifying large groups made up of individuals with diverse specialties and spread across a large geographic area. Her results showed that in large groups women were better at building team cohesion, which tended to suffer because of turf wars between departments. “When you’re on a huge team,” Dr. Post said, “there’s a good chance people don’t speak up or are not heard. It can get really unwieldy.” But she found that women have better communication and coordination skills to get these large teams working together.

Dr. Post is a graduate of the University of Geneva. She earned a master’s degree at the University of Lausanne and a Ph.D. in organizational management from Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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