Differences Between the Careers of Women and Men Stanford MBA Graduates

By Thomas W. Harrell
1989| Working Paper No. 1031

Careers of Stanford MBA graduates from 1973 through 1985 were studied by questionnaire in 1987. The response rate was 56% after two mailings. The purpose was to compare the careers of female and male graduates. All female graduates in the thirteen classes beginning in 1973, the first year of substantial numbers of females were questioned with an equal sized sample of their male classmates. The responses, limited to US citizens working in the US, numbered over 800, with slightly over 400 for each sex. Many sex differences appeared with statistical significance, but many of the differences were not large. Males had higher initial and current pay, and almost double the percentage of General Managers. Males had more continuous employment, worked longer hours, had greater job satisfaction, were more frequently in line positions, were less frequently in staff positions, and had many other statistically significant differences in their present job outlook, and expectations for the future, as compared to their female classmates.