Impact of CEO Gender on Employee Turnover and Employee Returns

Document Type: Conceptual Paper


1 PhD Scholar, Faculty of Economics and Management Sciences, International Islamic University, Malaysia

2 Alumnae, Lords Ashcroft International Business School, Anglia Ruskin University, UK


This purpose of this research was to investigate the impact of CEO gender on Employee Turnover and Returns for the year 2017 in 40 companies of Fortune 1000. This research adopted causal research design and quantitative research method. The collected data were examined by the independent sample t-test via SPSS software. The study found that CEO Gender has a significant impact on Returns per Employee in terms of profits. However, CEO Gender was not found to have any impact on Employee Turnover. The findings of the study suggest that gender of the CEO matters in giving rise to returns per employee through profit. The findings also suggested that despite gender impacts, underrepresentation of women in executive managerial positions are results of social perceptions and should be looked up to reduce gender gaps to increase organisational performance and productivity. This research also emphasises that organisational policies and practices could be implemented to encourage women into leadership positions and offer equal opportunities in terms of recruitment, pay and evaluation of performance to improve performance. Lastly, this is a pioneer research to evaluate CEO gender’s impact on Employee Turnover and Returns per Employee.


Abubakar, R. A. & Kura, K. M. (2015). Does Gender Moderate The Relationship Between Job Satisfaction and Employee - Turnover Intention? A Proposed Model. International Journal of Accounting & Business Management, 3(1), 254-259.
Adams, R. B. & Ferriera, D. (2009). Women in the Boardroom and Their Impact on. , Journal of Financial Economics, 94(2), 291-309.
Adams, R. B., Almeida, H. & Ferreira, D. B. (2002). Diversity and incentives in teams: Evidence for corporate boards, IL: University of Chicago.
Adams, S. M., Gupta, A., Haughton, D. M. & Leeth, J. D. (2007). Gender differences in CEO compensation: evidence from the USA. Women in Management Review, 22(3), 208-224.
Adusei, M., Akomea, S. Y., Poku, K. & McMillan, D. (2017). Board and management gender diversity and financial performance of microfinance institutions. Cogent Business & Management, 4(1), 1-14.
Ahern, K. R. & Dittmar, A. K. (2012). The Changing of the Boards: The Impact on Firm Valuation of Mandated Female Board Representation. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 127(1), 137-197.
Al-Hummadi, B. A. (2013). Leadership, Employee Satisfaction and Turnover in the UAE Public Sector. [Online]  Available at: download?doi= [Accessed 2 March 2018].
Alm, M. & Winberg, J. (2016). How Does Gender Diversity on Corporate Boards Affect the Firm Financial Performance? An Empirical Investigation of Swedish OMX- listed Firms. [Online] Available at: gupea_2077_41620_1.pdf[Accessed 17 March 2018].
Arfken, D., Bellar, S. L. & Helms, M. M., (2004). The ultimate glass ceiling revisited: the presence of women on corporate boards. Journal of Business Ethics, 50(2), 177-186.
Armstrong, M. (2010). Armstrong’s Handbook of Reward Management Practice: Improving Performance through Reward. 3rd ed. London: Kogan Page Limited.
Atieno, O. P. (2009).  An Analysis of the strengths and limitation of qualitative and quantitative research paradigms. Problems of education in the 21stcentury, 13, 13-18.
Bakotić, D. (2016). Relationship between job satisfaction and organisational performance. Economic Research-Ekonomska Istraživanja, 29(1), pp. 118-130.
Barreiro, P. L. & Albandoz, J. P. (2001). Population and sample. Sampling techniques, Sevilla: Management Mathematics for European Schools.
Becker, G. S. (1971). The economics of discrimination. 2nd Edition ed. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Benkraiem, R., Hamrouni, A., Lakhal, F. & Toumi, N. (2017). Board independence, gender diversity and CEO compensation. Corporate Governance: The International Journal of Business in Society, 17(5), 845-860.
Brady, C. A. et al. (2011). Distinct p53 Transcriptional Programs Dictate Acute DNA-Damage Responses and Tumor Suppression. Cell, 145(4), 571-583.
Brancato, C. K. & Patterson, D. J. (1999). Board diversity in U.S. corporations: Best practices for broadening the profile of corporate boards, Canada: The Conference Board..
Bryan, L. L. (2007). The new metrics of corporate performance: Profit per employee. [Online]  Available at: [Accessed 14 March 2017].
Campbell, K. & Minguez-Vera, A. (2008). Gender diversity in the boardroom and firm financial performance. Journal of Business Ethics, 83(3), 435-451.
Carbery, R., Garavan, T. N., O'Brien, F. & McDonnell, J., (2003). Predicting Hotel Managers’ Turnover Cognitions. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 18(7), 649-679.
Carli, L. L. & Eagly, A. H. (2016). Women face a labyrinth: an examination of metaphors for women leaders. Gender in Management: An International Journal, 31(8), 514-527.
Carter, D. A., Simkins, B. J. & Simpson, W. G. (2003). Corporate Governance, Board Diversity, and Firm Value. The Financial Review, 38(1), pp. 33-53.
Catalyst (2018). Women CEOs of the S&P 500. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 24 February 2018].
Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. (2018). Women's Gains In CEO Roles Stagnate In 2017. [Online]  Available at: [Accessed 28 February 2018].
Christiansen, L. et al. (2016). Gender Diversity in Senior Positions and Firm Performance: Evidence from Europe, s.l.: International Monetary Fund (IMF).
CNN (2013). More people prefer a male boss, but gender gap is narrowing. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 15 MArch 2018].
Cook, A. & Glass, C. (2015). Diversity begets diversity? The effects of board composition on the appointment and success of women CEOs. Social Science Research, 53(1), 137-147.
Daas, P. & Tóth, J. A. (2012). Secondary data collection, Hague: Statistics Netherlands.
Devi, S., Hassan, Z. & Hamza, S. M. (2015). Impact Women on Board (WOB) on Firm’s financial Performance: A study of Malaysia’s Public Listed Companies. International Journal of Accounting & Business Management, 3(2), 121-132.
Dezső, C. L. & Ross, D. G. (2008). Girl Power”: Female Participation in Top Management and Firm Performance. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 12 March 2018].
Dezso, C. L. & Ross, D. G. (2011). Does Female Representation in Top Management Improve Firm Performance? A Panel Data Investigation. [Online]  Available at:
Duguid, M. M., Loyd, D. L. & Tolbert, P. S. (2010). The Impact of Categorical Status, Numeric Representation, and Work Group Prestige on Preference for Demographically Similar Others: A Value Threat Approach. Organization Science, 23(2), 386 - 401.
Eagly, A. H., Makhijani, M. G. & Klonsky, B. G. (1992). Gender and the evaluation of leaders: A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin 111:3–22. Psychological Bulletin, 111, 3-22.
Eduardo, M. & Poole, B. (2016). CEO age and gender: Subsequent market performance. Cogent Business & Management, 3, 1-8.
Elliott, J. R. & Smith, R. A., (2001). Ethnic Matching of Supervisors to Subordinate Work Groups: Findings on “Bottom-up.  Ascription and Social Closure. Social Problems, 48(2), 258–276.
Elsaid, E. & Ursel, D. N. (2017). Re-examining the Glass Cliff Hypothesis using Survival Analysis: The Case of Female CEO Tenure. British Journal of Management, 20.
Emiroğlu, B. D., Akova, O. & Tanrıverdi, H., (2015). The relationship between turnover intention and demographic factors in hotel businesses: A study at five star hotels in Istanbul. Istanbul, Elsevier Ltd.,   385 – 397.
Farrell, K. A. & Hersch, P. L. (2005). Additions to corporate boards: the effect of gender. Journal of corporate finance, 11(1-2), 85-106.
Flabbi, L., Macis, M., Moro, A. & Schivardi, F., 2014. Do Female Executives Make a Difference? The Impact of Female Leadership on Gender Gaps and Firm Performance. Industrial Organization, 1-40.
Forbes (2016). Business Gender Diversity Solved: More Women Means More Profit. [Online]  Available at: business-gender-diversity-solved-more-women-means-more-profits/#3ababf49170f [Accessed 23 March 2018].
Forbes, D. P. & Milliken, F. J (1999). Cognition and Corporate Governance: Understanding Boards of Directors as Strategic Decision-Making Groups. The Academy of Management Review, 24(3), 489-505.
Foreman, W. T., (2009). Job satisfaction and turnover in the Chinese retail industry. Chinese Management Studies, 3(4), 356-378.
Fortune (2014). Women of the Global 500. [Online]  Available at: [Accessed 24 February 2018].
Fortune (2017). These Are the Women CEOs Leading Fortune 500 Companies. [Online]  Available at: [Accessed 24 February 2018].
Fortune (2018). Fortune 500. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 23 March 2018].
Francoeur, C., Labelle, R. & Sinclair-Desgagné, B. (2008). Gender Diversity in Corporate Governance and Top Management. Journal of Business Ethics, 81(1), 83-95.
Gallup (2013). Americans Still Prefer a Male Boss. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 15 March 2018].
Gilbert, R (1987). Statistical Methods for Environmental Pollution Monitoring. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.
Giuliano, L., Levine, D. I. & Leonard, J., (2006). Do Race, Age, and Gender Differences Affect Manager-Employee Relations? An Analysis of Quits, Dismissals, and Promotions at a Large Retail Firm. [Online]  Available at: workingpapers/151-07.pdf [Accessed 19 March 2018].
Gladman, K. & Lamb, M. (2012). GMI Ratings’ 2012 Women on Boards Survey, New York: GMI Ratings.
Graham, A. (2016). Putting Profit per Employee in Action for Results. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 14 March 2018].
Graham, H. & Bennett, R., (1998). Human Resources Management. 9th Edition ed. England: Pearson Education Limited.
Grissom, J. A., Nicholson-Crotty, J. & Keiser, L. (2012). Does My Boss’s Gender Matter? Explaining Job Satisfaction and Employee Turnover in the Public Sector. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 22, 649-673.
Grybaite, V. (2006). Analysis of theoretical approaches to gender pay gap. Journal of Business Economics and Management, 7(2), 85-91.
Gu, A. (2017). CEO Gender Effect on Market Perception and Company Performance. [Online] Available at: Gu_Research_Thesis.pdf [Accessed 17 March 2018].
Gutek, B. A. & Cohen, A. G. (1987). Sex ratios, sex role spillover, and sex at work: A comparison of men’s and women’s experiences. Human Relations, 40, 97–115.
Hair, J. F., Anderson, R. E., Tatham, R. L. & Black, W. C. (1998). Multivariate Data Analysis. 5th Ed. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Hair, J., Money, A., Samouel, P. & Babin, B (2003). Essentials of Business Research Methods. New Jersey: Wiley.
Hambrick, D. C (2007). Upper echelons theory: An update. The Academy of Management Review, 32(2), 334-343.
Hambrick, D. C. & Mason, P. A. (1984). Upper Echelons: The Organization as a Reflection of Its Top Managers. The Academy of Management Review, 9(2), 193-206.
Harwell, M. R. (2011). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods: Pursuing ideas as the keystone of exemplary inquir. 2nd ed. Thousand Oaks (CA): Sage Publications.
Hayes, T. M. (2015). Demographic Characteristics Predicting Employee Turnover Intentions. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 21 March 2018].
Hora, G. S. (2015). A Global Study: Where are the Women CEO’s: Myths & Reality? [Online]  Available at: Where-are-Women-CEOs-A-Global-Study-by-IRC.pdf[Accessed 28 February 2018].
House, R., A, S. S. & Herold, D. M. (1996). Rumours of the Death of Dispositional research are vastly exaggerated. Academy of Management Review, 21(1), pp. 203-224.
IBM Knowledge Center (2018). Independent-Samples T Test. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 3 April 2018].
Jiang, K. et al. (2012). When and How Is Job Embeddedness Predictive of Turnover? A Meta-analytic Investigation. Journal of Applied Psychology, 97(5), 1077-96.
Joo, B.-K., Hahn, H.-J. & Peterson, S. L. (2015). Turnover intention: The effects of core self-evaluations, proactive personality, perceived organizational support, developmental feedback, and job complexity. Human Resource Development International, 18(2), 116-130.
Judd, M. C. & McClelland, G. H (1989). Data analysis: a model-comparison approach. 2nd ed. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.
Karatepe, O. M. et al. (2006). The effects of selected individual characteristics on frontline employee performance and job satisfaction. Tourism Management, 27(4), 547-560.
Khalid, S. A. et al. (2009). Gender as a Moderator of the Relationship between OCB and Turnover Intention. Asian Social Science, 5(6), 108-117.
Khan, W. A. & Vieito, P. J. (2013). Ceo Gender and firm performance. Journal of Economics and Business, 67, 55-66.
Knight, D. et al. (1999). Top management team diversity, group process, and strategic consensus. Strategic Management Journal, 20, 445–465.
Koch, A. J., D'Mello, S. D. & Sackett, P. R. (2015). A meta-analysis of gender stereotypes and bias in experimental simulations of employment decision making. Journal of Applied Psychology, 100(1), 128-161.
Koch-Weser, I. N (2013). The Reliability of China’s Economic Data: An Analysis of National Output. [Online]  Available at: Research/TheReliabilityofChina%27sEconomicData.pdf [Accessed 25 August 2017].
Krishnan, H. & Park, D. (2005).  A few good women—on top management teams. Journal of Business Research, 58, 1712-1720.
Lee, T. H. (2012). Gender Differences in Voluntary Turnover: Still a Paradox?. International Business Research, 5(10).
Lund Research (2013). Independent t-test using SPSS Statistics. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 2 April 2018].
Mahadeo, J. D., Soobaroyen, T. & Hanuman, V. O., (2012). Board Composition and Financial Performance: Uncovering the Effects of Diversity in an Emerging Economy. Journal of Business Ethics, 105(3), 375–388.
Mamun, C. A. A. & Hasan, M. N. (2017). Factors affecting employee turnover and sound retention strategies in business organization: a conceptual view. Problems and Perspectives in Management", 15(1), 63-71.
Martín-Ugedo, u. F., Minguez-Vera, A. & Palma-Martos, L. A. (2016). CEO Women in Spanish Publishing Firms: Determinants and Influence of risk and Perfromance. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 17 March 2018].
Matsa, D. A. & Miller, A. R., 2013. A Female Style in Corporate Leadership? Evidence from Quotas. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 5(3), 136–169.
Meijer, R. E. (2010). Effects of CEO gender on firm performance and on stock valuation and returns. [Online]  Available at: [Accessed 12 March 2018].
Morgan, W. B. & King, E. B. (2012). Mothers' psychological contracts: Does supervisor breach explain intention to leave the organization?, Human Resource Management, 51(5), 629-649.
Nakagawa, Y. (2016). CEO's Leadership, Mediated By The Operating System And Line Managers’ Involvement Effect In The "GDMIn HRM"-Business Case In US, Korean And Japanese Firms. International Journal of Application or Innovation in Engineering & Management, 5(9), 1-13.
O'Neil, C. & Schutt, R. (2014). Doing Data Science: Straight Talk From The Frontline, California: O'Reilly Media.
Orser, B. & Leck, J. (2010). Gender influences on career success outcomes. Gender in Management: An International Journal, 25(5), 386-407.
Patel, P. (2009.) Introduction to Quantitative Methods. [Online] Available at:[Accessed 30 September 2017].
Peni, E. (2014). CEO and Chairperson Characteristics and firm performance. Journal of Management & Governance, 18(1), p. 185–205.
Petrillose, M. J. & Montgomery, R. (2013). An Exploratory Study of Internship Practices in Hospitality Education and Industry's Perception of the Importance of Internships in Hospitality Curriculum. Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Education, 9(4), 46-51.
Petrovic, J. (2008). Unlocking the role of a board director: a review of the literature. Management Decision, 46(9), 1373-1392.
Phelps, E (1972). The Statistical Theory of Racism and Sexism. American Economic Review, 62(4), 659-61.
Polit, Beck, D. F., Hungler, C. T. & P, B. (2001). Essentials of nursing research: methods, appraisal, and utilization / Denise F. Polit, Cheryl Tatano Beck, Bernadette P. Hungler. 5th ed. United States: Philadelphia: Lippincott, c2001.
Powell, G. N. (1990). One more time: Do female and male managers differ?. Academy of Management Perspectives, 4, 68-75.
Price, J. L. (1977). The study of turnover. Ames (IA): Iowa State University Press.
Randøy, T., Thomsen, S. & Oxelheim, L. (2006). A Nordic Perspective on Corporate Board Diversity, Oslo: Nordic Innovation Centre.
Rhode, D. & Packel, A. K. (2014). Diversity on Corporate Boards: How Much Difference Does Difference Make?, Delaware Journal of Corporate Law (DJCL), 39(2), 377-426.
Richard, O. C. (2000). Racial diversity, business strategy, and firm performance: A resource- based view. Academy of Management Journal, 43, 164-177.
Rietz, A. D. & Henrekson, M. (2000). Testing the Female Underperformance Hypothesis. Small Business Economics, 14(1), 1–10.
Rose, C. (2007). Does female board representation influence firm performance? The Danish evidence. Corporate Governance: An international Review, 15(2), 404-413.
Ruiz-Jiménez, J. M., Fuentes-Fuentes, M. d. M. & Ruiz-Arroyo, M. (2016). Knowledge Combination Capability and Innovation: The Effects of Gender Diversity on Top Management Teams in Technology-Based Firms. Journal of Business Ethics, 135(3), 03-515.
Saunders, M. N., Lewis, P. & Thornhill, A. (2008). Research Methods for Business Students. 5th ed. London: Pearson Education Limited.
Schieman, S. & McMullen, T. (2008). Relational demography in the workplace and health: an analysis of gender and the subordinate-superordinate role-set. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 49(3), 286-300.
Scotland, J (2012). Exploring the Philosophical Underpinnings of Research: Relating Ontology and Epistemology to the Methodology and Methods of the Scientific, Interpretive, and Critical Research Paradigms. English Language Teaching, 5(9), pp. 9-16.
Sekaran, U. & Bougie, R. (2013). Research Methods for Business: A Skill Building Approach. 6th Edition ed. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Shao, L. & Liu, Z. (2014). CEO Gender and Performance, s.l.: Simon Fraser University.
Skaggs, S., Stainback, K. & Duncan, P. (2012). Shaking things up or business as usual? The influence of female corporate executives and board of directors on women’s managerial representation. Social Science Research, 41(4), 936-948.
Smith, N., Smith, V. & Verner, M. (2006). Do women in top management affect firm performance?A panel study of 2,500 Danish firms. International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, 55(7), 569-593.
Smith, S. M. & Albaum, G. S. (2012). Designing Your Study (Basic Marketing Research Book 1). 1st ed. Provo: Qualtrics.
Solakoglu, M. N. & Demir, N. (2016). The role of firm characteristics on the relationship between gender diversity and firm performance. Management Decision, 54, 1407–1419.
Stolt, F. & Beischer, J. (2015). Gendr Diversity in Swedish Boardrooms, Gothenburg: University of Gothenburg.
Strøm, R. Ø., D’Espallier, B. & Mersland, R. (2014). Female leadership, performance, and governance in microfinance institutions. Journal of Banking & Finance, 42, 60-75.
Taneja, S., Golden, M. P. & Oyler, J. (2012). Empowerment and Gender Equality: The Retention and Promotion of, Texas: Texas A&M University.
Terjesen, S., Singh, V. & Sealy, R. (2008). Female presence on corporateboards: A multi-country study of environmental context. Journalof Business Ethic, 83(1), 55-63.
Ulndag, O., Khan, S. & Guden, N. (2011). The Effects of Job Satisfaction, Organizational Commitment, Organizational Citizenship Behavior on Turnover Intentions. Hospitality Review, 29(2), 1-21.
United Nations Development Programme (2014). Human Development Report 2014 Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience, New York: United Nations Development Programme.
Watson, W. E., Kumar, K. & Michaelsen, L. K., (1993). Cultural diversity’s impact on interaction process and performance: comparing homogeneous and diverse task groups. Academy of Management Journal, 36, 590-602.
Weisberg, J. & Kirschenbaum, A. (1993). Gender and Turnover: A Re-examination of the Impact of Sex on Intent and Actual Job Changes. Human Relations, 46(8), pp. 987-1006.
Weiss, H. & Cropanzano, R. (1996). Affective Events Theory: A Theoretical Discussion of the Structure, Causes and Consequences of Affective Experiences at Work. Research in Organizational Behaviour, 18(1), 1-74.
Williams, C. L. (1989). Gender differences at work: Women and men in nontraditional occupations. Berkeley (CA): University of California Press.
Wolfers, J. (2006). Diagnosing discrimination: stock returns and CEO gender, s.l.: IZA Discussion Papers.
Yamamoto, I. & Matsuura, T. (2014). Effect of work-life balance practices on firm productivity: Evidence from Japanese firm-level panel data. B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy, 14(4), 1677-1708.
Yap, M. & Konrad, A. M. (2009). Gender and Racial Differentials in Promotions: Is There a Sticky Floor, a Mid-Level Bottleneck, or a Glass Ceiling?, Relations Industrielles, 64(4), 593–619.