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Business and Management.
Previous research shows that gender vanguards (individuals who demonstrate gender-atypical skills and behavior) suffer backlash in the form of social and economic penalties (Rudman & Phelan, 2008). This study examined backlash against female and male job applicants who were either gender-atypical or typical. Professionals (N = 149) evaluated female or male managerial applicants for internal promotion described in their performance review as showing either self-advocacy or advocacy on behalf of their team. Atypical, other-advocating men were judged to be low on agency and competence and penalized with job dismissal. Serial mediation analysis demonstrated that, compared with other-advocating women, other-advocating men were perceived to lack agency, which contributed to a perceived loss of competence that ultimately led to greater penalties. The implications of these findings for contemporary leadership theories and men’s and women’s professional success in the workplace are discussed.
Bosak, J. et al. (2018) Be an Advocate for Others, Unless You Are a Man: Backlash Against Gender-Atypical Male Job Candidates, 28th International Congress of Applied Psychology, July 8–13, 2014, Palais des Congrès in Paris, France.