Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Generational Study: Professional Millennial Women Who Aspire to Become Senior Leaders
by Meston, Monty W., D.B.A., Capella University, 2020, 163; 28093787
Abstract (Summary)

The study sought to explore how the perceptions of a leader may affect professional millennial women and their perceptions of leaders as they endeavor for senior leadership positions. Businesses invest significant resources in diversity and inclusion programs, but the lack of diversity in senior leadership positions still exists. Millennial women were chosen as this study’s population because they are the next generation moving into senior leadership positions, and a gap in research existed. The specific business problem is the lack of diversity of women in senior leadership positions; no research was found on how millennial women perceived who and what a leader is. Supporting theories used were transformational leadership theory and generational theory. The conceptual framework started with the business problem, theoretical context, theories, themes, and the gap in research knowledge. This was an exploratory, qualitative, single case study consisting of literature review, data collection, field test, one-on-one interviews, a review of social media and external documentation, and data analysis using NVivo12. The research questions addressed were (a) How does the discernment of who and what a leader is, influence the decision of professional millennial women and their desire to remain with an organization? (b) How are professional millennial women experiencing generational leadership differences in their pursuit of senior leadership or C-Suite positions? and (c) How has the interaction between professional millennial women and other generations of leaders influenced their desire to strive for C-Suite or senior leadership positions? The population used for this study was women born between 1980 and 1999, has worked for a Fortune 500 company, has an undergraduate degree, and has more than one year of leadership experience. The snowball method was used to recruit participants in the study. One field test and eight one-on-one interviews were conducted. The key findings revealed that leadership factors influenced the participants' decisions to remain with an organization, not their perceptions of a leader. The study found that the participants believed that a college degree is needed to compete with the older generation and millennial men and to distinguish them above their male counterparts. The research found that some millennial women want to attain senior leadership or C-Suite positions and also confirmed that generational differences affect professional millennial women and their desire to remain with an organization.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Morgan, James
Commitee: Wood, Vanessa, LaViolette, Bruce
School: Capella University
Department: School of Business and Technology
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 82/3(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Business administration, Womens studies, Management
Keywords: Diversity, Generational, Implicit leadership, Leadership, Millennial, Women
Publication Number: 28093787
ISBN: 9798672179971
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