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close this book Attitudes towards women as managers : a review of literature and research findings (1991)
close this folder Study of attitudes towards women managers in India
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Study of attitudes towards women managers in India

It can be seen from the above that a growing body of research now supports the contention that there is a bias in the selection and treatment of women managers. Existence of sex discrimination in recruitment, compensation, tenure and promotions is now claimed to be proved beyond doubt. Many organisations have begun to take steps to remove sex biases by conducting training programs and workshops to raise the consciousness of employees to such issues. However till the 1970’s, the difference in attitudes between men and women towards women in management could not be measured due to the lack of a concrete instrument which could measure attitudes of the two sexes. Peters Terborg and Taynor (1974) remedied this by developing an instrument called the ‘Women as Managers Scale’(WAMS) (Ref. Annexure 1). This scale consists of 21 statements about women as managers. Eleven of these statements are worded favourably while ten are worded unfavourably. The respondent is asked to indicate his/her opinion on a 7 point Likert scale with 7 indicating total agreement towards the statement and 1 indicating total disagreement.

The score received by the respondents could range from high of 147 (indicating highly favourable attitude towards women as managers) to a low of 21 indicating highly unfavourable attitude. Peters, Terborg and Taynor administered the scale to 541 undergraduates at several American Universities and found it to be highly reliable. The WAMS has been extensively administered in a lot of countries including India (Gulhati, 1990). Most of the studies show a similar trend of conclusions - attitudes of men are less positive than attitudes of women. Further, in none of the studies, did any demographic variable, other than gender, have a significant relationship with the WAMS score. This implies that female gender is the only variable influencing positive attitudes.