Women Are More Likely To Be Seen As Leaders Than Men – Unless They’re The Ones Judging

The 'confidence gap' rears its ugly head again in new research which concludes women perceived as likely to be good leaders as men, unless they're the ones judging.


by Alya Mooro |
Published on

We're working on it, we are, but it's no secret that women tend to undervalue themselves and their abilities. Now, research has confirmed that both genders are equally as likely to be perceived as competent leaders. Well durr! Thanks for catching up, world!

Differences arose, however, when participants were asked to evaluate themselves. "When other-ratings only are examined, women are rated as significantly more effective than men. In contrast, when self-ratings only are examined, men rate themselves as significantly more effective than women rate themselves" found the study, which was recently published in the Journal of Applied Psychology.

So basically, people more frequently identified women as skilled leaders, apart from if they were self-evaluating, when men suddenly became Alexander The Great and women the mouse he crushed beneath his boot-clad feet. Sigh.

This random and really disconcerting phenomena is often attributed to a whole bunch of things, like the 'imposter' effect which suggests women are more likely to feel unqualified for their jobs - even when they're really not, and regardless of the amount of props they get - and the 'confidence gap' which argues women are simply less assured in their own abilities than men are.

Why? We don't know! But it's time we start believing we're just as awesome as we are. Especially as the rest of the world seems ready and willing to accept women in leadership positions: "As more women have entered into and succeeded in leadership positions, it is likely that people's stereotypes associating leadership with masculinity have been dissolving slowly over time," concluded the study's lead researcher.

Follow Alya on Twitter @moorizZLA

Picture: Lukasz Wierzbowski

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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