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The Existence Of Gender-Based Bias Against Women At The Workplace

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In contrast to those taking an experience-based-bias perspective, several writers have suggested that other mechanisms hold women back, regardless of their qualifications. They have argued that women do not receive the same support and assistance as their male peers and that they are subjected to greater scrutiny and expectations than menDezso, Cristian L (2016). It is further argued that attributions of their characteristics, performance, and behaviors are vastly detrimental to their success in organizations, and that they are not rewarded as highly as men who have made comparable achievementsFrenkiel, Nora (2014). Evidence for the existence of gender-based bias against women at the workplace is plentiful, especially at higher corporate levels. Headhunters report that organizations still prefer male candidates for senior executive positions over equally experienced women (Williams, 1988).

Sutton and Moore (1985) reported that among respondents to a Harvard Business review survey, men consistently reported higher salaries than women at the same experience level, except for those with under five years’ experience. Almost 60 percent of their male respondents indicated that a woman must be exceptional to succeed in business; about 58 percent of the men and 33 percent of the women believed that women have at least an equal opportunity for advancement in the companies where the respondents worked. The survey respondents also indicated that top management is one of the employment sectors in which women have the fewest opportunitiesBonte, D et al(2009). Similarly, the results of a recent study by(Stroh, Brett, & Riley, 1992) in Britain by tracking 1,000 male and female midlevel managers indicated that women’s salaries and job transfers lagged behind those of men over a period of five years, even though both groups had the same qualifications in terms of education, career orientation, functional and hierarchical experience. One of the authors concluded that “the women were not only disadvantaged but discriminated against” (Business Week, 1992: 76).

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Hitt and Barr (1989), drawing on a sample of managers and professionals, found that sex was an issue in selection decisions for midlevel and upper-level management positions: despite equal qualifications (educational level and experience), women had lower probabilities of being selected than men. Further, applicants’ sex interacted with other job-irrelevant variables (age and race) to affect such decisions. Proponents of the sex-based-bias perspective hold that the highest cadres of corporations function as old boys’ clubs with “glass ceilings” limiting the ascension of women to the topmost leadership ranks (Morrison, White, Van Velsor, & the Center for Creative Leadership, 1987; Solomon, 1990). The “good old boys” barrier enforced by stereotyping, excluding women, and causing them social discomfort holds women down (Haskell, 1991). As a result 400 female executives surveyed in two studies, 70 percent of one group and 56 percent of the other reported a male-dominated corporate culture and the existence of a glass ceiling as obstacles to their success (Business Week, 1992).


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