Women are, in increasing numbers, participating in the labour market and are an important part of an organisation’s human resource pool. Nevertheless, women still face inappropriate treatment at work. One cause of this is family‐related issues. In particular, pregnancy and child birth present special challenges for working women. Discrimination towards pregnant women is commonplace in work settings. Problems are often related to individual work relationships, for example, the one between the pregnant follower and her manager. It is important to understand problems that impact on women in working life that can disturb their job satisfaction, their performance and willingness to give their best for the organisation. Therefore, for the benefit of both employer and employee, existing practices in leader follower relationships during pregnancy are worth studying in more depth. In leadership studies, the Leader‐Member Exchange (LMX) theory is focused on dyadic leader‐follower relationships and is thus used here to understand this phenomenon. In the present article, the literature on pregnancy and work as well as on LMX is re viewed. On the basis of these reviews, a future research agenda is offered.
Equal Opportunities International – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 1, 2005
Keywords: Pregnancy; Working women; Leadership; Leader‐member exchange; Leader‐follower Dyad
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