Motivation of Men and Women to Join the Armed Forces




Motivation, Army, Military, Czech Armed Forces, female soldier, male soldier


The armed forces are traditionally the domain of men, however, in recent decades this trend has changed slightly - there has also been an interest from the women´s side in entering the field of the national defence. The article is based on the practice of the Czech Armed Forces, where the representation of women has been relatively stable for many years - around 13%. The purpose of the article was to find out how significantly selected factors reflecting the specifics of the military profession motivate young men and women to join the army, and on the contrary, discourage them from doing so. The aim was then to identify whether there are differences between motivational aspects of men and women. The data was obtained in the form of a semi-structured questionnaire, which was completed by 179 respondents – the first-year military students of the University of Defence, the only military institution of higher education of the Czech Armed Forces. No statistically significant difference was found between the motivation of men and women based on their perception of financial evaluation, employee benefits and position of the Czech Armed Forces in society. However, for several factors notable differences were recorded. Participation in foreign military missions, working with military technology, working in the field, interest in history and interest in warfare play more important role in motivation to join the army for male soldiers than for female soldiers, while women are proven to be motivated by interpersonal relations more than men. Moreover, in relation to aspects causing demotivation from joining the army, female soldiers tend to be discouraged by risk of injury, risk of loss of life, possibility of being sent to a foreign military operation and fear of bullying much more than male soldiers.