Daniels, N. (2021). The Relationship between Job Satisfaction of Black Women in Leadership Positions in Oregon State Government
Keywords: race, racism, ethnicity, gender, intersectionality, diversity, equity, inclusion, Black women, women, leaders, job satisfaction, public government, public sector, public organizations, Oregon
Abstract: Public government organizations must reconcile the historic and pervasive impact of racism, sexism, and a myriad of other harms within its structures and systems. Public government leaders must ensure all employees are treated equitably, welcomed, valued, onboarded, well trained, and properly mentored, to create a productive, high-functioning work environment and to establish and solidify employee satisfaction in their profession. Diverse employees often manage interpersonal and intrapersonal conflicts because of their racial/ethnicity, gender, and intersectional categorization in diversified workforces. These conflicts often go unresolved because dominant culture has not examined the root causes of employee dissatisfaction (Sims & Carter, 2019). Little empirical research has been conducted on employee diversity in public sector organizations, and even less research focusing on Black women in the public sector. Using the Job Satisfaction Survey (JSS) this study examines the areas: race, gender, and intersectionality to determine whether any relationship exists between Black women leaders’ underrepresentation and their job satisfaction in Oregon State Government. While the significance of the data could not be met due to the number of respondents, the results showed a negative relationship between Job Satisfaction scores and Black women leaders (male leaders as well). The researcher sought to expound upon the distinct experiences of historically excluded people in public sector by examining areas such as Gender and Intersectionality, Black Racial Identity Theory, Critical Race Theory, Ecological Systems Theory. Using a quantitative correlational approach, the researcher evaluated three areas: race, gender, and intersectionality focusing Black women leader underrepresentation in Oregon State Government. The collected data were subjected to quantitative, descriptive analysis using SPSS. The study’s theoretical foundation was the groundbreaking research that created the concept of Intersectionality, Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory, and Antiracist Politics (Crenshaw, 1989). The implications of this study for professional practice include understanding that job satisfaction needs to improve to retain valuable employees, improve organizational commitment, increase an organization’s productivity, and focusing on Job Satisfaction centered in diversity, equity, and inclusion could result in an overall improvement to the organization’s performance. This study's findings had statistically weak to moderate relationships of all three areas of examination due to limited responses within the targeted population. Future research will call for a broadened population as outlined in Chapter 5.