Diversified Search and Kennesaw State University Release Survey Findings on Healthcare Leadership and Gender

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PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 19, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Diversified Search (Diversified), founded in 1974 and one of the nation's top ten executive search firms, partnered with researchers from the Women's Leadership Center through the Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University to release a new research study on Healthcare Leadership and Gender which identifies specific factors and trends that differ by gender and impact the process of recruiting, developing and retaining healthcare talent. The survey found striking differences between women and men in healthcare leadership positions in several areas: career paths, earnings, responsibilities, perceptions about family life balance, and views on barriers to career advancement.

The purpose of the research was to examine gender differences in the career experiences of healthcare leaders including Chief Executive Officers and other C-suite positions, Vice Presidents and Director Levels. Participants included female and male leaders working for hospitals and health systems in the U.S.

According to Martha Hauser, a senior partner in the healthcare practice of Diversified Search, "In our executive searches for healthcare organizations, we have noted differences in the backgrounds, experiences and outcomes of female candidates for CEO and other top positions. We wanted to examine these differences in career paths and trajectories in order to provide insights which might be helpful to healthcare organizations in developing and managing emerging talent. "

Among the findings are:

  • A significantly greater number of women than men were promoted from within their organizations, while men were more likely to be hired from outside.
  • Women's salaries were considerably lower, by an average of 35%, than men in similar positions.
  • Women have different work histories than men with nearly half reporting a background in nursing.
  • Women derive significantly more satisfaction than men do from a sense of meaningful work/contributing to society.
  • More women than men cited the following factors as valuable to their careers: access to flexible work practices, support from family members, networking within their organizations, leadership abilities, involvement in professional/community groups, and having sponsors to endorse them.
  • Significantly more women reported the following as challenges to their careers: lack of supportive supervisors, exclusion from informal networks, absence of senior role models, inhospitable culture/biased attitudes and failure of senior leadership to help in advancement.

A summary of the research findings is available here.


Headquartered in Philadelphia, Diversified Search also has U.S. offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., and worldwide in Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and the Americas. Diversified is the exclusive U.S. partner of AltoPartners, the international alliance of independent search firms with offices in 30 countries worldwide. For more information, go to http://www.diversifiedsearch.com


The Coles College of Business Women's Leadership Center is dedicated to helping female students and professionals reach their leadership potential through innovative research, actionable programs that educate a wide audience of men and women, and a focal point for women's networking where they learn to be rainmakers for themselves and others.

For more information, go to http://coles.kennesaw.edu/centers/womens-leadership-center/

CONTACT: Stephen S. Morreale (215) 656-3592

Source: Diversified Search