What does the paper cover?
This paper presents pioneering insights into the impact of women’s representation on organisational performance in project-based organisations (PBOs). The results help refine the positive findings of past research and identify the moderating effect of industry type on the benefits of women’s representation on organisational performance.
The main objective of this study was to investigate whether the relationship between women’s representation and organisational performance varies across industries. This was done by using a sample of 932 Australian organisations and a time-lagged research design to test whether the positive effects of women in management on organisational performance would be stronger in PBOs than in non-PBOs.
The findings provide pioneering evidence for the positive effects of more women in management on the operational performance (EBITDA) in PBOs. These results support organisational contingency theory and the authors’ argument that PBOs are best positioned to capitalise on the benefits of increased representation of women because of the greater value in creativity and innovation achieved through mixed teams.
Having more women managers in PBOs can lead to improved organisation outcomes and deliver a better competitive advantage. Women project managers bring high levels of skills and qualifications, multiple perspectives and diverse market insights. Due to the unique project based operational structure and team-based working environment in PBOs women’s management styles can also have a positive impact on decision-making for improved performance outcomes.