The Glass Ceiling Effects on Women

In: Social Issues

Submitted By amylamngan
Words 2380
Pages 10
The term “Glass Ceiling” became popular when a Wall Street Journal article used it in 1986. It refers to the barrier that prevents women from stepping into the top management level in any organizations. The “Glass Ceiling” is invisible and impenetrable. Very often a woman could see her ultimate career goal was just ahead of her, but she just could not get to the top of the hierarchy. Before the term was introduced, researchers had been exploring varies theories that could explain why it was so hard for women to reach the highest level in business that was dominated by white males. One explanation could be that women might have chosen less stressful jobs in order to take care of their family members. Another explanation was that women might lack the network of crucial professional contacts that could help them advance in their careers. After the term was introduced, the society became more and more aware of the unequal career opportunities offered to white men versus all other groups of people. The situation has been changing and improving, little by little.
Many researches done in the 80s and 90s of the last century suggested that women were significantly underrepresented in upper management level, and their salaries and wages were much lower than the male counterpart. According to Cai & Kleiner (1999), in a 1989 estimation by the U.S. Department of Labor, only 1 to 2 percent of senior executive management positions include women. The report issued by the Federal Glass Ceiling Commission (as cited in Sincoff, Baker, & Graham, 2006), stated that in 1990 only 6.2% of federally employed women were at or above the level of middle management, while 28% of the men were at or above the same level. A study of female engineers in government services in 1991 showed that less than 3% of all federally employed engineers above the same level were female. At highest level,…...

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