Authentic leadership: women leaders in Serbia


  • Sandra Dramićanin University of Kragujevac, Faculty of Hotel Management and Tourism in Vrnjačka Banja, Serbia
  • Snežana Mihajlov Academy of Professional Studies South Serbia, Department of Business Studies Blace, Serbia
  • Nebojša Pavlović University of Kragujevac, Faculty of Hotel Management and Tourism in Vrnjačka Banja, Serbia



women's leadership, authentic leadership, self-awareness, internalized moral perspective, balanced processing, relational transparency


Authentic leaders are people who are aware of themselves and own capabilities, who respect other people's opinions, perspectives and attitudes (about business and them as leaders), who are guided by high moral principles and practice transparency in business and communication with other employees. The aim of this research is to show are the women leaders in Serbia belong to the authentic type of leader and which of the characteristics of the authentic leader is the most common among them. In the research 113 women leaders from various activities from the territory of the Republic of Serbia participated. Of the total number of respondents, 31 results show an authentic leadership style, while only 3 results show a strong authentic style. Self-awareness is a dimension that stands out in relation to the other three and characterizes the largest number of women leaders. Further analysis showed that the greatest leadership potential in terms of authentic leadership has women who deal with services, have between 36-45 years and 10-15 years of work experience in the business in which they are engaged and have Bachelor’s degree. The society in Serbia is such that it prefers male leaders, the goal of this research is to show that women are excellent leaders based on their characteristics and to have the predisposition to become great authentic leaders.



Download data is not yet available.


Algera, P. M., & Lips-Wiersma, M. (2012). Radical authentic leadership: Co-creating the conditions under which all members of the organization can be authentic. The Leadership Qquarterly, 23(1), 118-131.

Alilyyani, B., Wong, C. A., & Cummings, G. (2018). Antecedents, mediators, and outcomes of authentic leadership in healthcare: A systematic review. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 83, 34-64.

Avolio, B. J. (2011). Full range leadership development. Sage Publications.

Avolio, B. J., & Gardner, W. L. (2005). Authentic leadership development: Getting to the root of positive forms of leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 16(3), 315-338.

Berkovich, I., & Gueta, B. (2020). Teachers’ authentic leadership and psychological need satisfaction climate in second chance programmes: The moderating role of teachers’ gender. Educational Management Administration & Leadership, 1741143220957340.

Bligh, M. C., & Kohles, J. C. (2008). Negotiating gender role expectations: Rhetorical leadership and women in the US Senate. Leadership, 4(4), 381-402.

Brown, B. (2018). Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts. Random House.

Dramićanin, S. (2019). The impact of authentic leadership on the commitment of employees in travel agencies in the Republic of Serbia. BizInfo (Blace) Journal of Economics, Management and Informatics, 10(1), 29-41.

Evelyn, J. (2015(. Best Practice Series: Women in Leadership. Korn Ferry Institute.

Gardiner, R. (2016). Gender, authenticity and leadership: Thinking with Arendt. Leadership, 12(5), 632-637.

Gardner, W. L., Cogliser, C. C., Davis, K. M., & Dickens, M. P. (2011). Authentic leadership: A review of the literature and research agenda. The Leadership Quarterly, 22(6), 1120-1145.

Gardner, W. L., Avolio, B. J., Luthans, F., May, D. R., & Walumbwa, F. (2005). “Can you see the real me?” A self-based model of authentic leader and follower development. The Leadership Quarterly, 16(3), 343-372.

George, B. (2003). Authentic leadership: Rediscovering the secrets to creating lasting value. John Wiley & Sons.

Giallonardo, L. M., Wong, C. A., & Iwasiw, C. L. (2010). Authentic leadership of preceptors: predictor of new graduate nurses' work engagement and job satisfaction. Journal of Nursing Management, 18(8), 993-1003.

Gipson, A. N., Pfaff, D. L., Mendelsohn, D. B., Catenacci, L. T., & Burke, W. W. (2017). Women and leadership: Selection, development, leadership style, and performance. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 53(1), 32-65.

Halim, N. A. A., & Razak, N. A. (2014). Communication strategies of women leaders in entrepreneurship. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 118, 21-28.

Hannah, S. T., Walumbwa, F. O., & Fry, L. W. (2011). Leadership in action teams: Team leader and members’ authenticity, authenticity strength, and team outcomes. Personnel Psychology, 64(3), 771-802.

Heilman, M. E. (2012). Gender stereotypes and workplace bias. Research in organizational Behavior, 32, 113-135.

Hopkins, M. M., & O’Neil, D. A. (2015). Authentic leadership: Application to women leaders. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 959.

Ibarra, H. (2015). The authenticity paradox. Harvard Business Review, 93(1/2), 53-59.

Ilies, R., Morgeson, F. P., & Nahrgang, J. D. (2005). Authentic leadership and eudaemonic well-being: Understanding leader–follower outcomes. The Leadership Quarterly, 16(3), 373-394.

Iqbal, S., Farid, T., Khan, M. K., Zhang, Q., Khattak, A., & Ma, J. (2020). Bridging the Gap between Authentic Leadership and Employees Communal Relationships through Trust. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(1), 250.

Irvane, D., & Reger, J. (2006). The Authentic Leader: It's About Presence, Not Position. Midpoint Trade Books.

Klenke, K. (Ed.). (2017). Women in leadership: Contextual dynamics and boundaries. Emerald Group Publishing.

Leroy, H., Anseel, F., Gardner, W. L., & Sels, L. (2015). Authentic leadership, authentic followership, basic need satisfaction, and work role performance: A cross-level study. Journal of Management, 41(6), 1677-1697.

Liu, H., Cutcher, L., & Grant, D. (2015). Doing authenticity: The gendered construction of authentic leadership. Gender, Work & Organization, 22(3), 237-255.

Luthans, F., & Avolio, B., (2003). Authentic leadership: a positive development approach. In Cameron, K. S., Dutton, J. E., Quinn, R. E. (Eds.). Positive Organizational Scholarship (pp. 241-258) .Berrett-Koehler.

Neider, L. L., & Schriesheim, C. A. (2011). The authentic leadership inventory (ALI): Development and empirical tests. The Leadership Quarterly, 22(6), 1146-1164.

Northouse, P. G. (2018). Leadership: Theory and practice. Sage publications.

Qiu, S., Alizadeh, A., Dooley, L. M., & Zhang, R. (2019). The effects of authentic leadership on trust in leaders, organizational citizenship behavior, and service quality in the Chinese hospitality industry. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 40, 77-87.

Randolph-Seng, B., & Gardner, W. L. (2013). Validating measures of leader authenticity: Relationships between implicit/explicit self-esteem, situational cues, and leader authenticity. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 20(2), 214-231.

Shen, H., & Kim, J. N. (2012). The authentic enterprise: Another buzz word, or a true driver of quality relationships?. Journal of Public Relations Research, 24(4), 371-389.

Silva, A. (2014). What do we really know about leadership?. Journal of Business Studies Quarterly,5(4), 1-4.

Steffens, N. K., Mols, F., Haslam, S. A., & Okimoto, T. G. (2016). True to what we stand for: Championing collective interests as a path to authentic leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 27(5), 726-744.

Udani, Z. A. S., & Lorenzo-Molo, C. F. (2013). When servant becomes leader: The Corazon C. Aquino success story as a beacon for business leaders. Journal of Business Ethics, 116(2), 373-391.

Walumbwa, F. O., Avolio, B. J., Gardner, W. L., Wernsing, T. S., & Peterson, S. J. (2008). Authentic leadership: Development and validation of a theory-based measure. Journal of Management, 34(1), 89-126.

Walumbwa, F. O., Wang, P., Wang, H., Schaubroeck, J., & Avolio, B. J. (2010). Psychological processes linking authentic leadership to follower behaviors. The Leadership Quarterly, 21(5), 901-914.

Zander, L. (2013). Viewpoint: An authentic jerk. Authentic leadership can be bad leadership. In Ladkin, D., Spiller, C. (Eds.), Authentic leadership: Clashes, convergences and coalescences (pp.279-281). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.




How to Cite

Dramićanin, S., Mihajlov, S., & Pavlović, N. (2020). Authentic leadership: women leaders in Serbia. BizInfo (Blace) Journal of Economics, Management and Informatics, 11(2), 33–45.

Most read articles by the same author(s)