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Gender differences in response to competition with same-gender coworkers: A relational perspective

Lee, SY; Kesebir, S; Pillutla, MM; (2016) Gender differences in response to competition with same-gender coworkers: A relational perspective. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , 110 (6) pp. 869-886. 10.1037/pspi0000051. Green open access

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Abstract

We take a relational perspective to explain how women and men may differently experience competition with their same-gender coworkers. According to gender socialization research, the female peer culture values harmony and the appearance of equality, whereas hierarchical ranking is integral to the male peer culture. As competition dispenses with equality and creates a ranking hierarchy, we propose that competition is at odds with the norms of female (but not male) peer relationships. On this basis, we predicted and found in 1 correlational study and 3 experiments that women regard competition with their same-gender coworkers as less desirable than men do, and that their relationships with each other suffer in the presence of competition. We discuss the implications of these findings for women’s career progression.

Type: Article
Title: Gender differences in response to competition with same-gender coworkers: A relational perspective
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1037/pspi0000051
Publisher version: http://psycnet.apa.org/doi/10.1037/pspi0000051
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 American Psychological Association. All rights reserved. This article may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.
Keywords: gender differences, competition, cooperation, work relationships, gender socialization
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > UCL School of Management
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1496009
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