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Lack of support for women executives from other women

Women executives are often threatened by other women at the top tiers of organisations, new research from Washington University in St. Louis has found.

Researchers proposed a concept called “value threat” that takes two forms: competitive threat and collective threat.

Assistant professor of organisational behaviour Michelle Duguid defines competitive threat as “the fear that a highly qualified female candidate might be more qualified, competent or accepted than you are.”

“Women also might be concerned about bringing in another woman with lower qualifications, who could reinforce negative stereotypes about women and impact others’ impressions of them. This is collective threat.”

According to Duguid, the research has strong implications for business and leadership as these potential threats could have a significant impact on the interaction between female workers and ultimately, their performance.

Read more at Washington University, St. Louis

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