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  • Writer's pictureMatt Garris

Gender Stereotypes

The following post is adapted from my personal academic coursework.


A classmate expressed interest in the role of hormones and body chemistry in workplace dynamics. While I am aware that personality and relationships are important to a team’s success, I had never given much thought to the proposed topic. However, as I considered how body chemistry and hormone fluctuation relate to mood and personality I could easily see how these directly impact the work environment.


Along these lines, I began to reflect upon the stereotypes associated with gender and hormonal fluctuations. I have often heard complaints about “too much testosterone” in a group of adolescent males. Likewise, I have heard many males dismiss issues raised by females based on the perception that their concerns are just the result of their hormone levels. He et al. categorized common stereotypes (e.g. involving gender, race, ethnicity, etc.) along two dimensions: competence and warmth. They proposed “that people also hold stereotypes of occupations along these two dimensions” and that “occupational stereotypes may have more widespread effects on the distribution of workers across different kinds of jobs, a phenomenon otherwise known as occupational segregation.” One example of this is in the role of a chief executive officer (CEO). He et al.’s data showed that CEO was a high-competence, low-warmth occupation. Thus, if females are subconsciously perceived to be “warmer,” then there is the potential for unintentional bias against hiring a female CEO. While this is tangential to the proposed topic, it is close enough to merit further research.


The more I thought about this research proposal, the more fascinated I became with the topic. I am now curious as to what manner of theories presently address the relationship between hormone production and leadership roles and interactions. I would also like to know how much chemistry has to do with personality types. If my classmate pursues this topic, I think it will not only help women (the intended subject), but also help people fulfill Jesus’ teaching in John 7:24 (NKJV): “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.”


References

He, J. C., Kang, S. K., Tse, K., & Toh, S. M. (2019). Stereotypes at work: Occupational stereotypes predict race and gender segregation in the workforce. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 115(103318). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvb.2019.103318


Holy Bible, New King James Version. (2020). Thomas Nelson (Original work published 1982).

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