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Tournament Incentives in the Field: Gender Differences in the Workplace

  • Delfgaauw, Josse

    ()

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

  • Dur, Robert

    ()

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

  • Sol, Joeri

    ()

    (University of Amsterdam)

  • Verbeke, Willem

    ()

    (Erasmus University Rotterdam)

We ran a field experiment in a Dutch retail chain consisting of 128 stores. In a random sample of these stores, we introduced short-term sales competitions among subsets of stores. We find that sales competitions have a large effect on sales growth, but only in stores where the store's manager and a large fraction of the employees have the same gender. Remarkably, results are alike for sales competitions with and without monetary rewards, suggesting a high symbolic value of winning a tournament. Lastly, despite the substantial variation in team size, we find no evidence for free-riding.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4395.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4395
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  1. Polachek, Solomon William, 1981. "Occupational Self-Selection: A Human Capital Approach to Sex Differences in Occupational Structure," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 60-69, February.
  2. Ghazala Azmat & Nagore Iriberri, 2009. "The importance of relative performance feedback information: Evidence from a natural experiment using high school students," Economics Working Papers 1148, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Mar 2010.
  3. David Reiley & John List, 2008. "Field experiments," Artefactual Field Experiments 00091, The Field Experiments Website.
  4. Emmanuelle Auriol & Régis Renault, 2007. "Status and Incentives," THEMA Working Papers 2007-01, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  5. Dargnies, Marie-Pierre, 2011. "Men too sometimes shy away from competition: The case of team competition," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Behavior SP II 2011-201, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  6. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2005. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," NBER Working Papers 11474, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Bruno S. Frey & Susanne Neckermann, 2008. "Awards: A view from psychological economics," IEW - Working Papers 357, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  8. Jordi Blanes i Vidal & Mareike Nossol, 2011. "Tournaments Without Prizes: Evidence from Personnel Records," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(10), pages 1721-1736, October.
  9. Marianne Bertrand & Kevin F. Hallock, 2001. "The Gender Gap in Top Corporate Jobs," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(1), pages 3-21, October.
  10. Lazear, Edward P & Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 841-64, October.
  11. Uri Gneezy & Aldo Rustichini, 2004. "Gender and Competition at a Young Age," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 377-381, May.
  12. Marianne Bertrand & Kevin F. Hallock, 2001. "The Gender gap in top corporate jobs," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(1), pages 3-21, October.
  13. Barry J. Nalebuff & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1983. "Prices and Incentives: Towards a General Theory of Compensation and Competition," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 14(1), pages 21-43, Spring.
  14. Green, Jerry & Stokey, Nancy, 1983. "A Comparison of Tournaments and Contracts," Scholarly Articles 3203644, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Benny Moldovanu & Aner Sela & Xianwen Shi, 2006. "Contests For Status," Working Papers 0604, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Department of Economics.
  16. Glenn W. Harrison & Morten I. Lau & E. Elisabet Rutström, 2007. "Estimating Risk Attitudes in Denmark: A Field Experiment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 109(2), pages 341-368, 06.
  17. Michael Kosfeld & Susanne Neckermann, 2011. "Getting More Work for Nothing? Symbolic Awards and Worker Performance," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 86-99, August.
  18. Ray Reagans, 2005. "Preferences, Identity, and Competition: Predicting Tie Strength from Demographic Data," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(9), pages 1374-1383, September.
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