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Are Female Managers Better Than Their Male Counterparts? Survey Says…YES

Male managers can come off as aloof, or uninterested in the happenings throughout their team. While this may not be true, their female counterparts are simply more innately skilled in managing employees. Why? Female managers are more engaged.

Now, this isn’t a statement to set off a conversation about equality in the workplace (although I suppose it could be mistaken for one). According to Gallup, employees of female managers outscore employees of male managers on 11 out of 12 engagement items. With that said, however, most employees would still rather have a male manager. Compared to men, women are more likely to prefer a female supervisor. As a whole, however, both men and women agree they’d rather have a male boss.

To ponder: The primary reason women are better managers is because they are more capable of engaging their employees. If that’s so, why do employees overwhelmingly select male managers when given the choice?



Overall, employees want consistent and clear communication. They need this communication in order to stay in touch with company goals and how their role directly affects the completion of said goals. Research suggests that women have a greater connectivity in the brain between the left and right hemispheres which suggests a prominent ability for verbal communication.

Men, on the other hand, have more connections between the front and rear portions of the brain. Researchers believe this means they have significant ability to connect action and perception. Jacquelyn Smith (@JacquelynVSmith), Careers Editor at Forbes, said:

“…Employees whose managers hold regular meetings with them are almost three times as likely to be engaged as those with managers who do not… Engagement is the highest among employees whose managers communicate daily, using a combination of mediums…”



Employees who work for female managers are more likely to hear praise from their supervisor. In fact, these employees when compared to those who work for male managers are 1.17 times more likely to agree that they’ve received recognition for work in the last week. This suggests their primary reason they give positive feedback to enforce a sense of work value among employees.

Even feedback is a bit different when a manager is a woman. They are more inclined towards developmental resolutions rather than reprimanding or rear-facing reviews (which just so happens to be one of the things workers look for in a boss). Because female managers are more apt to give praise for a job well done, the way they review employees is different as well. These supervisors default to positive reinforcement and help their employees to do the same.


Promote your female managers

While this will help with diversity efforts in the management and leaderships scenes, it’s not just for EEOC or OFCCP compliance. Because female managers have a deeper ability to engage and motivate their employees, it stands to reason they would be able to do the same on a larger scale with a bigger team.

Female managers, due to their ability to engage and motivate employees through positive reinforcement, make better supervisors. Their natural ability to verbally communicate more effectively could play a large part in that. An engaged workforce is a productive workforce, and as women are able to engage their teams effectively, wouldn’t it be a good business decision (in the very least) to promote more qualified women to leadership roles?