AuthorNORTHCUTT, CECILIA ANN.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study used a questionnaire designed to identify personal characteristics that successful career women have in common across career fields. Information was elicited on self-esteem, achievement motivation, self-descriptive words, ethnicity, age, income level and occupational field, among other things. Subjects were women publicly recognized as successful by their peers. Twenty three of the sample (n = 249) were randomly selected for interviews. The questionnaire responses were analyzed to identify differences in self-esteem and achievement motivation between occupational fields, age, income levels, ordinal positions and other independent variables. Collectively, the results identified a high degree of self-esteem as the strongest characteristic shared by these successful career women. Additionally, self-esteem was affected by ordinal position of the subjects and related to the level of the women's perceived success and emotional compensation satisfaction. The career women defined the major components of success as: (1) achieving one's personal goals, (2) receiving recognition from others, (3) enjoying one's work, and (4) contributing to the community, to others, etc. The career women generally described themselves as responsible, competent, and hardworking. Non-traditional career women described themselves somewhat differently, as responsible, enthusiastic and confident. There was no statistical support for a relationship to achievement motivation. This finding, combined with the career women's definition of success, shows that items used in the questionnaire did not measure achievement motivation for this group. Several conclusions were drawn from the data analysis: (1) career women who have been publicly recognized by their peers have a high level of self-esteem; (2) women have a unique pattern of career development; (3) women focused more on "contributing to society/to others" than on "earning a high salary," and (4) women defined themselves as "hardworking" rather than "achievement oriented." Hypotheses made on the basis of previous research on career women and on Individual Psychology theory were generally supported. Future research on career women would be appropriate.
Degree ProgramCounseling and Guidance