Assessing the Leadership Styles of Male and Female Academics in Leadership Positions: Does Gender Matter

Abstract

This study assessed the leadership styles of male and female heads of departments in a Nigerian State university. This was done to ascertain whether differences exist in the way both sexes lead and whether the way women lead account for their under representation in leadership positions. Data from both primary and secondary sources were utilized for this study. The primary data was derived through the administration of the Multifactor leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) on 90 randomly selected academic staff in subordinate positions from 7 purposively selected faculties in Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Nigeria. The retrieved data were analysed using both descriptive and inferential statistics in the form of percentages, means, Cronbach alpha and Mann Whitney U test. It was found that both the male and female heads of departments utilized more of the transformational (males x̅=4.35; females x̅=4.50), democratic (males x̅=4.15; females x̅=4.13), transactional (males x̅=3.76; females x̅=3.59) and laissez-fair (males x̅=3.29; females x̅=3.06) leadership styles, as evident in their high mean scores. There was no significant difference (P>0.)5) in the leadership styles of both sexes. Women were found to lead in ways that are effective and the styles they adopted did not account for their under representation. The study concluded that the university should develop strategies for increasing the number of women in leadership positions since they were found to lead in ways that are effective; and investigate the factors that account for their under representation.

Keywords: Leadership Positions, Leadership Styles, Male And Female Academics, University


Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 53-64 (Download PDF)

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