The teddy bear effect: does babyfaceness benefit Black CEOs?

Livingston, Robert W and Pearce, Nicholas A (2009) The teddy bear effect: does babyfaceness benefit Black CEOs? Psychological Science, 20 (10). pp. 1229-1236. ISSN 0956-7976

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Abstract

Prior research suggests that having a baby face is negatively correlated with success among White males in high positions of leadership. However, we explored the positive role of such “babyfaceness” in the success of high-ranking Black executives. Two studies revealed that Black chief executive officers (CEOs) were significantly more baby-faced than White CEOs. Black CEOs were also judged as being warmer than White CEOs, even though ordinary Blacks were rated categorically as being less warm than ordinary Whites. In addition, baby-faced Black CEOs tended to lead more prestigious corporations and earned higher salaries than mature-faced Black CEOs; these patterns did not emerge for White CEOs. Taken together, these findings suggest that babyfaceness is a disarming mechanism that facilitates the success of Black leaders by attenuating stereotypical perceptions that Blacks are threatening. Theoretical and practical implications for research on race, gender, and leadership are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: LEADGroup
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > Business and Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Janet Snow
Date Deposited: 17 May 2013 07:03
Last Modified: 17 May 2013 07:03
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/44733
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