Skip to main content

Please enter a keyword and click the arrow to search the site

Gender, brokerage and performance : a construal approach

Journal

Academy of Management Journal

Subject

Organisational Behaviour

Authors / Editors

Brands R A;Mehra A

Publication Year

2019

Abstract

We present a new theory that seeks to explain differences in the performance of men and women friendship network brokers - individuals who bridge disconnected friends. In contrast to previous audience-centered explanations, our phenomenological theory emphasizes how brokers construe (i.e., perceive and interpret) their networks. We contend that when women perceive themselves as brokers in friendship networks, they experience threat, rooted in negative stereotypes about women brokers, which undermines their performance. Using data from a cohort of MBA students, Study 1 found that women (but not men) exhibited lower performance when they perceived themselves as brokers in small-group friendship networks. Using data from a larger group of MBA students, Study 2 replicated this finding and ruled out the possibility that underlying differences in the propensity to connect those who one bridges may explain the observed gender-based difference in broker performance. Using an experimental design, Study 3 found that elevated anxiety about task performance and negative social evaluations mediated the relationship between brokerage and performance for women but not for men. Women and men differ in how they psychologically construe brokerage in friendship networks; and this difference helps account for gender differences in the performance of network brokers.

Available on ECCH

No


Select up to 4 programmes to compare

Select one more to compare
×
subscribe_image_desktop 5949B9BFE33243D782D1C7A17E3345D0

Sign up to receive our latest news and business thinking direct to your inbox

×

Sign up to receive our latest course information and business thinking

Leave your details above if you would like to receive emails containing the latest thought leadership, invitations to events and news about courses that could enhance your career. If you would prefer not to receive our emails, you can still access the case study by clicking the button below. You can opt-out of receiving our emails at any time by visiting: https://london.edu/my-profile-preferences or by unsubscribing through the link provided in our emails. View our Privacy Policy for more information on your rights.