The Hair Color Found In Most Leadership Roles, According To Research

There's a definitive light-haired pattern.

Woman getting her hair dyed blonde FatCamera | Melpomenem | Getty Images / Canva

Blondes may not have more fun than the brunette next to them, but they do seem to appear to have more leadership qualities. And now, the numbers can actually prove it.

If you’re trying to be more successful in your line of work, it probably comes as no surprise to you that hair color doesn’t really play a part in the equation; that has more to do with your skills, gender, and other factors, including the industry you’re trying to work in.


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But if you want to secure a position of leadership, you need to go blonde because new statistics prove that that hair color just kind of goes with the territory.

Jennifer Berdahl and Natalya Alonso, research professors at the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business, looked into the phenomenon and found that there was a definitive light-haired pattern.


Only 2 percent of the world’s population has naturally blonde hair, and that portion changes only slightly when you consider just the people in the United States.

But apparently, many of those blonde women take on leadership roles.

According to the 2016 study, more than one-third of female senators (35 percent), and 48 percent of female CEOs, which is nearly half of S&P companies, are blonde. That is noticeable for the amount of people in those positions.

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But it doesn’t stop there. There is also a “disproportionate number” of female university presidents who happen to have that Goldilocks shine.


Berdahl was the first to notice this pattern. “This first became obvious to me at a conference at the Harvard Business School where the female speakers were mostly blonde,” she wrote on her blog.

It seems no surprise after this revelation that it can be traced to present-day examples, even in cases where the women were not born blonde. Both dyed and naturally blonde women excel in roles that require leadership of some sort. 

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Both Sandra Day O’Connor, the first female Supreme Court justice, and Hillary Clinton, the first female presidential candidate, tout their signature yellow tresses.


Interestingly enough, this bias for blondes does not extend to their male counterparts. In fact, only 2 percent of male CEOs are blonde.

So does this mean that people really do just prefer blondes? Maybe in their leadership positions. If you’re looking to gain some respect in your job and you’re not a natural, then grab a box of hair dye and watch the magic happen.

Who knows? Maybe Goldilocks was actually a quality control inspector for the three bears' home, not just an unwanted intruder.


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Merethe Najjar is a professional writer, editor, and award-winning fiction author. Her articles have been featured in The Aviator Magazine, Infinite Press, Yahoo, BRIDES, and more.