Role Congruity Theory: Gender Inequality In The Workplace

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Role Congruity Theory
Researchers Eagly and Karau (2002), proposed the role congruence theory which described that even though when women follow the same career tracks as men, women are less promotion opportunities in higher managerial positions (Eagly & Karau, 2002). This gender inequality that is perceived puts women in a disadvantage because they are less favorable compared to men. These findings suggest that high perceptions of gender inequality or role incongruity in the workplace make it harder for women to succeed in leadership roles (Eagly & Karau, 2002). Women with operation manager positions are viewed as less competent based on their gender roles. Moreover, women are more likely get social threat by their co-workers due to the
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Backlash, in this case, is defined as the social and economic consequences that are experienced when gender stereotypes are disconfirmed (Merluzzi & Phillips, 2014). Rudman (1998) describes the backlash effect, which occurs when females perceived competence increases while likability (warmness) decreases. So, when a woman is successful in a male dominant role, her perceived competence goes up but as a consequence her perceived niceness (hireability) goes down (Rudman, Glick 1999). In this case, backlash is defined as the social and economic consequences that are experienced when gender stereotypes are disconfirmed (Rudman, Glick 1999). Additionally, there are two possible threats in female leadership roles including conforming to their gender role or conforming to their leader role would produce a failure to meet the requirements of either gender role or leadership role (Eagly & Karau, 2002). Moreover, a female manager or leader that has similar credititials to her male counterpart may experience disadvantages, that can rise from the injunctive norms associated with female gender role (Eagly & Karau, 2002). To further demonstrate that point researchers, Ridgeway & Correll (2004), found that females in higher managerial levels were perceived as less positive, less favorable, failed to achieve the goals, and were paid a lower salary …show more content…
In fact Heilman and Okimoto (2007) state, that in their study of women discrimination in the workplace, neither men or women responded differently due to experimental manipulations. However, that study did find that females tended to rate female managers more lenient that male participants. Racusin’s study on science faculty’s subtle gender bias revealed that “The mean starting salary offered [to] the female student, $26,507.94, was significantly lower than that of $30,238.10 to the male student” (Racusin et al., 2012). As a result, women are perceived as less promotion opportunities, less competent, encounter stereotypes that relegate them into relatively low-paying functional jobs and occupations. This gender inequality in workplace situations increased the actual lower commitment of women to the workforce compared to men. Also, women are placed into the temporary jobs and this likely to reduced the wages and limited their career as

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