Gender differences in supervisors' use of performance feedback

Neil Brewer, Lynne Socha, Rob Potter

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    This study examined whether male and female supervisors differed in their delivery of performance feedback to subordinates. Male and female subjects supervised 2 confederate subordinates whose performance was stable and either above or below average. Supervisors regularly checked each subordinate's performance and could deliver one of several feedback messages. A MANOVA was performed on frequency of specific negative, general negative, specific positive, general positive, and neutral feedback messages, followed by stepdown analyses to isolate which dependent variables contributed uniquely. Male and female supervisors were distinguished by their use of specific negative feedback. Males were more likely to provide such messages to poorly performing subordinates, a result consistent with suggestions that males are characterized by a more directive leadership style.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)786-803
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - May 1996


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