The study was aimed at understanding why there is a disproportionate number of women in leadership in public practice firms in Zimbabwe. A few females get to be considered for the leadership pipeline as a result of them opting out due to the high-pressure environment and the failure to cope with work and life demands. Through an online survey with 167 respondents, the Career Orientation Assessment, the Career Barriers Inventory-Revised, and the Kaleidoscope Career Model were used to determine factors influencing career advancement outcomes. Statistical methods were used to determine if gender differences exist for career orientation and the perception of career barriers.
There were no significant gender differences for all the career constructs, with the exception of the lifestyle orientation scale (higher for females) and the lack of confidence barrier scale (higher for males). For the Kaleidoscope Career Model, authenticity is a key area of focus during the early career phase while the need for balance is important in the mid and late career phases. The study proposes various initiatives that public practice firms can implement to help to retain women in public practice. The findings will contribute to the extant literature on the career progression of women career development literature in the field of accounting.
Mini Dissertation (MBA)--University of Pretoria, 2019.