Mind Your Attitude: The Impact of Patriarchy on Women’s Workplace Behaviour

Article


Adisa, T., Cooke, F. L. and Iwowo, V. 2019. Mind Your Attitude: The Impact of Patriarchy on Women’s Workplace Behaviour. Career Development International. 25 (2), pp. 146-164. https://doi.org/10.1108/CDI-07-2019-0183
AuthorsAdisa, T., Cooke, F. L. and Iwowo, V.
Abstract

Purpose – By conceptualising patriarchy in the workplace as a social situation, this study examines the prevalence of patriarchal attitudes and their impact on women’s workplace behaviour among Nigerian organisations.

Design/methodology/approach – The study uses a qualitative research approach, drawing on data from 32 semi-structured interviews with female employees and managers in two highstreet banks in Nigeria.

Research Limitations – The extent to which the findings of this research can be generalised is constrained by the limited sample and scope of the research.

Findings – The study finds that patriarchy shapes women’s behaviour in ways that undermine their performance and organisational citizenship behaviour. Furthermore, the study finds that patriarchal attitudes, often practised at home, are frequently transferred to organisational settings. This transference affects women’s workplace behaviour and maintains men’s (selfperceived) superior status quo, whereby women are dominated, discriminated against, and permanently placed in inferior positions.

Practical Implications – The challenges posed by the strong patriarchy on women’s workplace behaviour are real and complex, and organisations must address them in order to create a fairer workplace in which employees can thrive. It is therefore essential for organisations to examine periodically their culture to ensure that all employees, regardless of gender, are involved in the organisation’s affairs. Furthermore, organisations need to help women become more proactive in combatting patriarchal behaviour, which often affects their performance and organisational citizenship behaviour. This requires organisations to affirm consistently their equal opportunities, equal rights, and equal treatment policies. It is essential that organisations take this problem seriously by attaching due penalty to gender discrimination, as this will go a long way in ensuring positive outcomes for women and providing a fairer workplace.

Originality/value – This study provides empirical evidence that a more egalitarian work environment (in Nigerian banking) will result in improved performance from female employees and organisations. It calls for greater policy and organisational interventions to create a more inclusive work environment and an equal society.

JournalCareer Development International
Journal citation25 (2), pp. 146-164
ISSN1362-0436
Year2019
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
Accepted author manuscript
License
File Access Level
Anyone
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1108/CDI-07-2019-0183
Web address (URL)https://doi.org/10.1108/CDI-07-2019-0183
Publication dates
Online03 Dec 2019
Publication process dates
Accepted05 Nov 2019
Deposited06 Nov 2019
Copyright holder© 2019 Emerald Publishing Limited
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