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Women CEOs Judged More Harshly than Men for Corporate Ethical Failures

Women incur greater penalties for ethical transgressions because of persistent gender stereotypes that tend to categorise women

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Women, CEOs, Men
Our study found that consumers' trust in, and willingness to support, an organisation after a failure varied based on the gender of the organisation's leader and the type of incident. Pixabay

Women CEOs do not always have it easy as researchers have found that people are less likely to support an organization after an ethical failure if the business is helmed by a female.

Female leaders, however, receive less negativity for general business failures, said the study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

“Our study found that consumers’ trust in, and willingness to support, an organisation after a failure varied based on the gender of the organisation’s leader and the type of incident,” said lead author of the study Nicole Votolato Montgomery of the University of Virginia in the US.

“Women incur greater penalties for ethical transgressions because of persistent gender stereotypes that tend to categorise women as having more communal traits than men, such as being more likable, sensitive and supportive of others,” Nicole Votolato said.

Women, CEOs, Men
Female leaders, however, receive less negativity for general business failures, said the study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Pixabay

Across three experiments, the researchers examined how gender would influence perceptions of female-led and male-led organisations after experiencing a competence failure, such as a product flaw, or an ethical failure, such as if the product flaw was known but not disclosed to the public for a long period of time.

In the first experiment, 512 participants read a business news article about an auto manufacturer and then filled out a survey about their intent to buy a vehicle from the company.

One-third of the participants read about an ethical failure, one-third read about a competence failure and the final third only read the company description.

Afterward, the participants were asked how likely they were to purchase a car from the company the next time they were in the market for a vehicle and reported their trust in the organisation.

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“When participants were told that the company had previously been made aware of a fuel sensor problem and failed to take immediate action, an ethical failure, they reported less intent to purchase from the company when the CEO was a woman than when the CEO was a man,” said Montgomery.

“However, when participants were told that the company was previously unaware of the product issue, a competence failure, they reported greater intent to buy the products when the CEO was a woman than when the CEO was a man.”

The purchase intentions for the group that read only the company description did not vary based on the CEO’s gender.

The findings of the other two experiments further demonstrated how gender stereotypes play a vital role in shaping our expectations of leaders and their organisations. (IANS)

Next Story

Here’s Everything you Need to Know About Male Breast Cancer

Know about the rarely seen breast cancer in men

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Breast Cancer
Male breast cancer is rarely seen and that is people are not aware about it. Pixabay

Breast cancer in men is rarely seen. It shares many similarities with cancer of the breast in women but there are some important differences too.

Male breast cancer represents between 0.5 and 1 per cent of all breast cancers diagnosed each year. Higher rates of male cancer in central and eastern Africa may be related to higher liver infectious diseases that lead to hypoestrogenism.

Dr Kumardeep Dutta Choudhury, Senior Consultant & Head of Department, Dept of Medical Oncology (IOSPL), Fortis Hospital, Noida, shares the facts you need to know about it.

Risk factors associated with breast cancer in men:

Genetics and family history

Breast Cancer
Higher rates of male breast cancer in central and eastern Africa may be related to higher liver infectious diseases that lead to hypoestrogenism. IANS

Family history of cancer in a first-degree relative is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer among men. Approximately 15 to 20 per cent of men with breast cancer have a family history of the disease compared with only 7 per cent of the general male population.

The risk is higher with inherited BRCA2 rather than BRCA1 mutations. Other genes which have been associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in men are PTEN tumor suppressor gene (Cowden syndrome), tumor protein p53 (TP53; Li-Fraumeni syndrome), partner and localizer of BRCA2 (PALB2), and mismatch repair genes (Lynch syndrome).

Alterations of the estrogen to androgen ratio

Excessive estrogen stimulation may be due to hormonal therapies (e.g., estrogen-containing compounds or testosterone), hepatic dysfunction, obesity, marijuana use, thyroid disease, or an inherited condition, such as Klinefelter syndrome may increase risk of male breast cancer.

Primary testicular conditions

Testicular conditions may increase risk of breast cancer in men include orchitis, undescended testes (cryptorchidism), and testicular injury.

PRESENTATION:

Male breast cancer has been diagnosed at a more advanced stage than female breast cancer, due to a lack of awareness. They generally present with a painless, firm mass that is usually subareolar, with nipple involvement in 40 to 50 percent of cases. The left breast is involved slightly more often than the right, and less than 1 percent of cases are bilateral. There may be associated skin changes, including nipple retraction, ulceration, or fixation of the mass to the skin or underlying tissues. Axillary nodes are typically palpable in advanced cases.

Breast Cancer
Excessive estrogen stimulation may be due to hormonal therapies can lead to breast cancer. Pixabay

Most histologic subtypes of that cancer seen in women are also present in men, men with breast cancer are rarely diagnosed with lobular carcinomas is due to lack of acini and lobules in the normal male breast, although these can be induced in the context of estrogenic stimulation.

TREATMENT:

Approach to treatment in men is same as that for women. However, role of breast conserving surgery is limited because of small volume of breast tissue. In hormone receptor-positive disease, we give adjuvant tamoxifen rather than an aromatase inhibitor (AI), because of insufficient evidence to support AI monotherapy for men. If there are contraindications to tamoxifen (e.g., hypercoagulable state), an AI with GnRHa may be administered. AIs do not reduce testicular production of estrogens, that’s why GnRHa is administered concurrently with AI. They are treated with mastectomy, radiotherapy, chemotherapy and hormone therapy.

SURVEILLANCE:

Limited data suggest these patients are at an increased risk of a contralateral breast cancer, but absolute risk is low. They are also at risk for secondary malignancies and 12.5 percent may develop a second primary cancer. The most common types were gastrointestinal, pancreas, non-melanoma skin, and prostate cancer.

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PROGNOSIS:

Ten-year disease-specific survival rates for histologically negative nodes – 77 and 84 per cent, one to three positive nodes – 50 and 44 per cent and four or more histologically positive nodes – 24 and 14 per cent. (IANS)