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Women and the Leadership Paradigm: Bridging the Workplace Gender-Gap in Nigeria

J O Longe


Women in top leadership positions have not attained the desired representation in business and government establishments within the Nigerian socio-economic environment. Thus, this study examined the leadership attributes of men and women in higher occupational echelons and the inhibitory dynamics preventing female employees from achieving equal upward career mobility like their male counterparts in work-organisations. The participants in this study were 400 top-ranking executives of government establishments and private business organisations contacted through a purposive sampling technique. However, 362 respondents fully participated in the study. Questionnaire was the major instrument used for data collection. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics. Findings specifically revealed an assumed differential in the leadership attributes of both sexes, but this variance was no impediment to women’s leadership effectiveness on their task performance. Despite this, women still faced higher odds of frictions and greater sex-typed expectations which decelerated their career mobility unlike their male counterparts. The study also found that there had been improvement but not equal representation, since the society decided the norms for advancement to higher leadership status. It concluded that for sustainable progress, both men and women should be accorded same opportunity in preferment to leadership positions in order to contribute to decision making and policy implementation in the work place