Date of Conferral

2015

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Management

Advisor

Joseph Barbeau

Abstract

Hispanics will become the majority ethnic group in the U.S. by 2060. The social and business cultural changes affected by these demographics are inevitable and will require leadership from academic and business communities in order to ensure clear direction for the future. Gender research in managerial and professional positions mostly includes White women and typically excludes those of other racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds. The research problem was that there is little known about the lived experiences of Hispanic women business executives. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the self-perceptions of leadership effectiveness of Hispanic women business executives. A conceptual lens informed by the concepts of intersectionality, bicultural competence, and emotional intelligence guided this study. Purposive sampling was used to obtain 12 participants for face-to-face interviews. Research questions focused on self-perceptions of leadership style, the ways they enact leadership, and their contributions to organizational effectiveness. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used to analyze the data and member checking helped assure trustworthiness of interpretations. The findings revealed that the participants acquired effective leadership skills through their diverse contact with other people and cultures. The potential positive social change impact includes a contribution to existing literature by increasing scholars' and business-peoples' understanding of this group's lived experiences; creating more leadership opportunities for Hispanic women; identifying areas for self-development, thereby improving leadership and decision making; and clarifying expectations for young Hispanic women considering executive leadership as a career path.