Fatima Tresh

Postgraduate Researcher


Fatima Tresh is a Postgraduate Researcher in the School of Psychology.

Thesis title

Leadership potential: The role of uncertainty

Research interests

Fatima's research interests are in Social and Organisational Psychology. She's interested in leadership potential and why we may endorse individuals with leadership potential from a group processes' perspective. For example, she is interested in understanding when individuals with future leadership potential are preferred as group leaders over individuals with past leadership performance or achievement. Specifically, Fatima is currently looking at biases in recognising leadership potential with a particular focus on gender barriers to women’s career progression.  




1+3 South East DTC (ESRC)

Research posters

  • Tresh, F., Player, A. & Randsley de Moura. (2014). The Role of Gender in Hiring Situations: The Preference for Potential. Poster presented at the BPS Social Psychology Section, Canterbury Christchurch University
  • Tresh, F., Player, A. & Randsley de Moura. (2015). The Role of Gender in Hiring Situations: The Preference for Potential. Poster presented at the BPS Annual Conference, University of Liverpool



  • Tresh, F., Steeden, B., Randsley de Moura, G., Leite, A., Swift, H., & Player, A. (2019). Endorsing and Reinforcing Gender and Age Stereotypes: The Negative Effect on Self-Rated Leadership Potential for Women and Older Workers. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 688. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00688
    Previous research has examined the impact of stereotypes on outcomes such as
    career progression and hiring decisions. We present a novel approach to examine
    the role of stereotypes in predicting self-rated leadership potential across gender and
    age groups. This research sheds light on the impact of leadership-incongruent and
    detrimental stereotypes about one’s gender and age, for women and older workers, on
    self-ratings of leadership potential. Across three studies (total N = 640), correlational and
    experimental evidence shows differential effects of stereotypes about women (vs. men)
    and older (vs. younger) people on self-ratings of their own leadership potential. Results
    suggest that both gender and age stereotypes affect older workers more than their
    younger counterparts (Study 1). Specifically, effects on self-rated leadership potential
    at the intersectional level show that endorsement of stereotypes has opposite effects on
    older women to younger men (Study 1). Furthermore, stereotyped workplace cultures
    impacted women’s and older worker’s perceptions of job fit (Studies 2 and 3), also
    extending to job appeal for older workers (Study 3). Results are discussed in terms of
    career implications for both women and older workers, with a particular focus on older
    women, whose intersecting identities are leadership stereotype-incongruent.
  • Player, A., Randsley de Moura, G., Leite, A., Abrams, D., & Tresh, F. (2019). Overlooked Leadership Potential: The Preference for Leadership Potential in Job Candidates Who Are Men vs. Women. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 755. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00755
    Two experiments tested the value people attach to the leadership potential and leadership performance of female and male candidates for leadership positions in an organizational hiring simulation. In both experiments, participants (Total N = 297) valued leadership potential more highly than leadership performance, but only for male candidates. By contrast, female candidates were preferred when they demonstrated leadership performance over leadership potential. The findings reveal an overlooked potential effect that exclusively benefits men and hinders women who pursue leadership positions that require leadership potential. Implications for the representation of women in leadership positions and directions for future research are discussed.
Last updated