How do the Members of In-company and Professional Women Networks Perceive Their Networks?

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Prior research focuses on the concept of in-company women networks in organizations. Less was known about the concept of professional women networks. This qualitative research project investigated three women networks. Two networks carried characteristics of both in-company women networks and professional networks and were located within the Radboud University Nijmegen. The six interviewees of these two networks were only board members. One network only entails elements of professional networks. The six interviewed respondents of this network were rather members with board functions or members without board functions. Based on prior theory of network characteristics, the perceptions of the network members on their networks was conducted. The characteristics of the women networks were: reasons for entry, goals of networks, strategy of networks, structure and culture, activities and perceived results. Regarding the specific concept of in-company and professional women networks, some elements were not theoretically described. This research helped to fill the theoretical gap. Furthermore, theory about the three developmental stadia by Donnellon and Langowitz (2009) served as analytical lens for analyzing the developmental stadia of the three networks. First, the three networks were analyzed based on prior theory, which filled the theoretical gap. Second, the two concepts were compared with each other. At last, recommendations were made for each network individually.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen