Date of Conferral







Patricia I. Fusch


In 2016, the U.S. Census Bureau indicated only 39.1% of women occupied management and leadership occupations. The absence of women in leadership roles minimizes career aspirations, reduces the benefits of gender diversity, and lowers growth opportunities for women. The purpose of this interpretive hermeneutical phenomenological study was to unveil the lived experiences of a sample of minority women managers and leaders in the finance and insurance sector in Central Florida who encountered general career barriers and self-imposed career impediments that hindered them from advancing. The conceptual framework that guided this study was the social cognitive career theory coupled with the self-efficacy theory. Data were collected through semistructured interviews with 8 minority mid-level managers and leaders in the finance and insurance industry in Central Florida. Data were analyzed using the modified van Kaam method reformed by Moustakas. Five themes emerged from the data: General career barriers, self-imposed career impediments, career challenges, career management strategies, and career barrier counsel. These results may contribute to social change by raising awareness about career impediments that can discourage career paths of women and illuminating strategies regarding how to maneuver through interferences. Women can take control of their lives and modify their career paths. When organizational managers and leaders become more self-aware of the perceived career obstructions, they can initiate the appropriate training to help their employees maneuver, overcome, and navigate through difficulties.