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Glass ceiling

Glass ceiling
In economics, the term glass ceiling refers to situations where the advancement of a qualified person within the hierarchy of an organization is stopped at a lower level because of some form of discrimination, most commonly sexism or racism, but since the term was coined, "glass ceiling" has also come to describe the limited advancement of the deaf, blind, disabled, aged and sexual minorities.[1]It is an unofficial, invisible barrier that prevents women and minorities from advancing in businesses. [2] 1964 in the hopes of allowing women to rise in the working world once proper experience has been achieved. The term "glass ceiling" has been thought to have first been used to refer to invisible barriers that impede the career advancement of women in the American workforce in an article by Carol Hymowitz and Timothy Schellhardt in the March 24, 1986 edition of the Wall Street Journal.[6] However, the term was used prior to that; for instance, it was utilized in a March 1984 Adweek article by Gay Bryant. The term glass ceiling was used prior to the 1984 article by two women at Hewlett-Packard in 1979, Katherine Lawrence and Marianne Schreiber, to describe how while on the surface there seemed to be a clear path of promotion, in actuality women seemed to hit a point which they seemed unable to progress beyond. Upon becoming CEO and chairwoman of the board of HP, Carly Fiorina proclaimed that there was no glass ceiling. After her term at HP, she called her earlier statement a "[d]umb thing to say."[7] However, the term was used by the U.S. Department of Labor in 1991 in response to a study of nine Fortune 500 companies. The study confirmed that women and minorities encountered considerable glass ceiling barriers in their careers; these barriers were experienced earlier in their professions than previously thought.[8] United States Senator Hillary Clinton used the term glass ceiling in her speech to endorse Senator Barack Obama for President: "And although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it."[9]

This situation is referred to as a "ceiling" as there is a limitation blocking upward advancement, and "glass" (transparent) because the limitation is not immediately apparent and is normally an unwritten and unofficial policy. This invisible barrier continues to exist, even though there are no explicit obstacles keeping minorities from acquiring advanced job positions – there are no advertisements that specifically say “no minorities hired at this establishment”, nor are there any formal orders that say “minorities are not qualified” – but they do lie beneath the surface.[3] The "glass ceiling" is distinguished from formal barriers to advancement, such as education or experience requirements. Mainly this invisible barrier seems to exist in more the developing countries, in those businesses this effect is highly "visible". However, this glass ceiling tends to cripple working women the most. This barrier prevents large numbers of women, ethnic minorities, and sexual minorities from obtaining and securing the most powerful, prestigious, and highest-grossing jobs in the workforce.[4] This barrier makes many women feel as they are not worthy enough to have these high-ranking positions, but also they feel as if their bosses do not take them seriously or actually see them as potential candidates.[5]

Types of Glass Ceiling Barriers
• Different pay for comparable work.[1] • Sexual, ethnic, racial, religious discrimination or harassment in the workplace • Lack of family-friendly workplace policies

Sexual discrimination was outlawed in the United States through the Civil Rights Act of


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Glass ceiling
occupations within a given profession. If women are in management positions, they are more likely to be in personnel than in marketing professions; the averages salaries of each are $48,048 and $56,940 per year, respectively. Another example occurs within the medical field. Female doctors are much more likely to be heavily constricted in the family practice or pediatric specialties, which average about $130,000 and $126,000 per year, respectively. However, men are more likely to become surgeons and highly specialized medical practitioners, who tend to average $240,000 or more per year.[15] This gender wage gap is present within all realms of the workforce – blue collar, managerial, and professional occupations. Only 16% of the top executive positions in America’s largest corporations and enterprises are held by women.[16] Additionally, the median weekly income of full-time working women is only 70.5% of full-time working men. This statistic tends to hold true across all fields of work.[17] This gender imbalance in occupations occurs to some degree because women are more likely than men to be newcomers in many fields; therefore, they lack the primacy and the increased pay that comes with seniority.[18] Gender Inequality is often embedded within the social hierarchy and this affects how women and men are perceived in leadership roles. Different traits are ascribed to females when compared to males that often color the selection process with unfounded bias. If a female does have other traits aside from the gendered traits that she is believed to possess, then she is viewed negatively.[19] For example, in a study conducted by ThomasHunt and Phillips (2004) they found that when women possessed expertise they were actually viewed as less influential by others. However, expertise was positive for males. Also, female led groups were less productive than male led groups even though the women held expertise in the area just like males. Therefore, possessing expertise is not viewed as positively as it is for males. This also suggests that lack of skills is not the only reason why women are not deemed worthy of leadership roles.[20]As cited by Lyness and Thompson in 1997, one consequence of sex stereotypes is that women’s achievements tend to be devalued or attributed to luck or effort rather than ability or skill,and therefore this stereotype has the potential to

Sexism and Glass Ceiling Effects - The Gender Wage Gap
One of the major indicators that serves to demonstrate an inequality between males and females is the controversy behind a supposed gender wage gap. This gap is the difference in both the wages and earnings between males and females who have equivalent job titles, training experience, education, and professions. In most circumstances, women are paid less than men when all of these factors are comparable.[10] A comparison frequently cited is that women make 75.3 cents on the dollar to men, which is derived from statistics maintained by the United States Census Bureau from 2003, relating specifically to an across-the-board comparison of year-round full-time workers. Furthermore, the gross national figures conceal the fact that men hold the highest paying, most prestigious, and most powerful jobs in the occupational structure; this accounts for much of the imbalance with men and women’s incomes.[11] This is referred to as occupational segregation. Men tend to be highly concentrated in the top professions, such as supervisors, managers, executives, and production operators. On the other hand, women tend to be over-represented in the lowest-ranking and lowest paid professions in the workforce, such as secretaries, sales associates, teachers, nurses, and child care providers. As a result, occupations become “sex typed” as either being specifically male or female jobs.[12] The stereotypically malecharacterized occupations, in which at least 60-75% of the workers are males, are more highly paid than occupations in which 60-75% of the jobholders are women.[13] This segregation of women into less-prestigious and lower-ranked jobs also decreases a woman’s chance of being promoted, as well as the chance of having any type of power over others. Moreover, occupational segregation reduces women’s access to insurance, benefits, and pensions.[14] Occupational segregation is a vicious cycle that successfully continues to put women down. Males not only have superior statuses than women between jobs, but also within the jobs themselves. Women are concentrated into the lower-ranked and lower-paid


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reduce the organizational awards that they receive. Lyness and Heilman (2006) found that in a study conducted with 448 upper-level employees that women were less likely to be promoted than males, and if they were promoted they had stronger performance ratings than males. However, performance ratings were more strongly connected to promotions for women than men.[21] This suggests that women had to be highly impressive to be considered eligible for leadership roles, whereas this was not the case for men. In a number of longitudinal studies (Cox & Harquail, 1991; Olson, Frieze, & Good, 1987; Strober, 1982; Wallace, 1989; Wood, Corcoran, & Courant, 1993), that track comparably qualified men and women, such as graduates of the same MBA program or law school, it has been shown that over time there is degradation of the women’s compensation that cannot fully be explained by differences in qualifications, work history, experience, or career interruptions. Women are more likely to choose jobs based on factors other than pay, for instance: health care and scheduling that can be managed with the duties of primary care of children for which women are still overwhelmingly responsible, and thus they may be less likely to take jobs that require travel or relocation or jobs that are hazardous. On average, women take more time off and work fewer hours, often due to the unequal distribution of childcare labor, domestic labor, medical needs specific to women, and other family issues that tend to fall to a woman’s responsibility per the gender roles assigned by society.[22] The ending result of women’s extensive obligation to attend to responsibilities of the home and children is that their wages plummet. Family demands have a downward pull on women’s earnings as they proceed throughout their life course. The earnings gap tends to widen considerably when men and women are in their early to mid-thirties; the gap reaches the widest point when men and women are in their fifties.[23] Another perspective on the gender wage gap comes from a 2008 research study by Judge and Livingston.[24] They investigated the relationship(s) between gender, gender role orientation, and labor marker earnings. The study did not specifically look at the gender wage gap, but focused more on the impact that the interaction between gender

Glass ceiling
role orientation (people’s beliefs about what occupations are considered suitable and appropriate for males and females) and gender has on earnings. The researchers suggested that the gender wage gap cannot fully be explained through economic factors, offering that underlying psychological components and attitudes account for some of the difference. They found that while traditional gender roles were positively connected to earnings, that gender significantly predicted the amount and direction of this relationship. For instance, traditional gender role orientation was positively related with earnings for males, providing them with strong earnings. Meanwhile, traditional gender role orientation was slightly negatively associated with earnings for females, providing them weaker earnings. This suggests that men who have traditional male-female attitudes about working are rewarded in the workplace for seeking to maintain the social order, while women were neither rewarded nor punished. In general, the study indicated that even though gender role beliefs are beginning to become less traditional for men and women, traditional gender role orientation continues to intensify the gender wage gap. See also: Material feminism

The Glass Ceiling and Disclosure of Sexual Orientation
In order to excel in the workplace it is important that people are familiar with a workers strong attributes. This may present obstacles for the LGBT community because their sexual orientation may be a large factor that plays in to how they identify themselves. In a study done by Ragins in 2004, disclosure of sexual orientation has been found to have some positive, some negative, and nonsignificant effects on work attitudes, psychological strain, and compensation. Ragins, Singh and Cornwell in 2007, found that in some cases disclosure of sexual orientation has been found to result in reports of verbal harassment, job termination, and even physical assault. (D’Augelli & Grossman, 2001; Friskopp & Silverstein, 1996). In their study, Ragins, Singh and Cornwell examined fear of disclosure only among LGBT employees who had not disclosed, or had not fully disclosed


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their sexual identity at work. Promotion rate and compensation were used to measure career outcomes. Promotions were defined as involving two or more of the following criteria that may occur within or between organizations: significant increases in salary; significant increases in scope of responsibility; changes in job level or rank; or becoming eligible for bonuses, incentives, and stock plans. Given this definition, respondents were asked how many promotions they had received over the past 10 years. Respondents also reported their current annual compensation, which included salary, bonuses, commissions, stock options, and profit sharing. The findings showed that those who feared more negative consequences to disclosure reported less job satisfaction, organizational commitment, satisfaction with opportunities for promotion, career commitment, and organization-based self-esteem and greater turnover intentions than those who feared less negative consequences.

Glass ceiling
in the United States who did not attend top notch law schools. However, you will seldom find an East Asian American partner of a leading law firm who did not attend a "Top 16 Law School" (according to the US News ranking). – This is a term used to describe the type of barrier minority woman encounter. Caucasian women may face the glass ceiling in the workforce, but be able to break through it from time to time; however, minority women’s glass ceiling tends to be more solid and unyielding. This ‘concrete ceiling’ is due to minority women facing both issues of sexism and racism which intensifies their obstructions in advancing within the labor market.[28] - After breaking through the first level of the glass ceiling, many women are beginning to face an additional barrier. This is a term used to describe this second level of obstruction which prevents women in managerial positions from receiving foreign management assignments, projects, and experiences that is becoming increasingly more important for promotion into the upperlevel managerial positions as documented by Insch, McIntyre, and Napier.[29] - The exclusion of openly gay men and women from certain jobs, especially in the media. (or glass escalator) - The rapid promotion of men over women, especially into management, in female-dominated fields such as nursing.Men in these fields are promoted with ease – they actually have to struggle not to advance due to facing invisible pressures and expectations to move up from where they currently are. This is based on traditional gender roles and stereotypes that men are expected to be in the chief roles, while women are to be in the subordinate positions. Therefore, in the fields where men are less common, they receive differential treatment that favors them to exert their authority and control in the workplace.[30] Glass cliff - A situation wherein someone has been promoted into a risky, difficult job where the chances of failure are higher. Celluloid ceiling, referring to the small number of women in top positions in



Reverse Glass Ceiling
A new phenomenon, known as the "reverse glass ceiling", has been taking shape in America over the past few years. More and more men have started their careers in female-dominated industries, such as nursing, paralegal, travel and childcare. Many have been discriminated against because of this. Some experts question whether it actually exists, because it is recent.[25] Some others call this concept the "glass escalator" and describe it as the rapid advancement of men into positions of authority within female-dominated occupations.[26] •


Variations and Related Terms
• - The exclusion of Asian-Americans from executive and managerial roles on the basis of subjective factors such as "lack of leadership potential" or "inferior communication ability" where the East Asian-American candidate has superior objective credentials such as Ivy League credentials (in comparison to their white counterparts with only state university credentials).[27] For example, research shows that there are a decent number of partners at leading prestigious law firms




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Hollywood, as documented by Lauzen (2002) and others. • - referring to something related to a maze and can find the way out of and get through; otherwise thought of as finding a path through power in an organization. • - refers to women who are trapped in lowwage, low mobility jobs in state and local government.[31] • - A term used to describe women’s struggle to reach the top of the corporate ladder. This term describes the theory that women are not incapable of reaching the top; they just get "stuck" on the middle rungs of the ladder. The effect has also inspired a musical, bearing the same name. "Glass Ceiling" (2006), written by Bret VandenBos and Alex Krall, examined and parodied the idiosyncrasies of both males and females in the corporate workplace.[32]

Glass ceiling

[5] Nevill, Pennicott, Williams, and Worrall 1900, p. 39. [6] Baker & Lightle, Cracks in the glass ceiling: An analysis of gender equity in the federal government auditing career field (2001), 18-26 [1] [7] The truth about Carly | Salon Life [8] Giele and Stebbins 2003, p. 147-148. [9] Anne E. Kornblut (June 8, 2008). "Clinton Urges Backers to Look to November". Washington Post: A01. content/article/2008/06/07/ AR2008060702088_2.html?sid=ST2008060702571. [10] Giele and Stebbins 2003, p. 310. [11] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 75. [12] Fox and Hesse-Biber 1884, p. 34. [13] Giele and Stebbins 2003, p. 212. [14] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 206. [15] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 205. [16] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 75. [17] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 203. [18] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 205. [19] Ridgeway, Cecilia L. (2001). "Gender, • Affirmative Action status, and leadership". Journal of Social • Employment Issues 57 (4): 637–655. doi:10.1111/ • Equal pay for women 0022-4537.00233. • Feminism [20] Thomas-Hunt, Melissa C.; Phillips, • Feminization of poverty Katherine W. (2004). "When What You • Gender role Know Is Not Enough: Expertise and • Gender equality Gender Dynamics in Task Groups". • Glass cliff Personality and Social Psychology • Gray ceiling Bulletin 30 (12): 1585–1598. • Masculism doi:10.1177/0146167204271186. • Racism [21] Lyness, Karen S.; Heilman, Madeline E. • Sexism (2006). "When fit is fundamental: • Social equality Performance evaluations and promotions • Stained-glass ceiling of upper-level female and male • Gender Inequality managers". Journal of Applied • Opting out of the labor force Psychology 91 (4): 777–785. doi:10.1037/ 0021-9010.91.4.777. 777/. [1] ^ "History." Break the Glass Ceiling. [22] Lukas, Carrie (2007-04-03). "A Bargain 2008. Break the Glass Ceiling At 77 Cents To a Dollar". Washington Foundation. 31 Mar 2008. Post. [2] Sullivan, arthur; Steven M. Sheffrin wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/02/ (2003). Economics: Principles in action. AR2007040201262.html. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458: [23] Giele and Stebbins 2003, p. 211. Pearson Prentice Hall. pp. 224. ISBN [24] Judge and Livingston 2008. 0-13-063085-3. [25] Merritt, Jennifer. "Does the "Reverse Glass Ceiling Exist?" MSN Encarta. 31 index.cfm?locator=PSZ3R9&PMDbSiteId=2781&PMDbSolutionId=6724&PMDbCategoryId=&PMDbP Mar 2008 [3] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 77-78. [26] The Architecture of Inequality: Sex and [4] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 77. Gender D. Newman and R. Smith 1999

See also



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Glass ceiling

[27] Fisher, Anne (2005-08-05). "Piercing the Glass Ceiling: The Second Layer of Glass.” ’Bamboo Ceiling’". Journal of Business Ethics 83:19-28. • Judge, Timothy A. and Beth A. Livingston. economy/annie/fortune_annie080805/ 2008. “Is the Gap More Than Gender? A index.htm. Longitudinal Analysis of Gender, Gender [28] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. 209. Role Orientation, and Earnings.” Journal [29] Insch, McIntyre, and Napier 2008. of Applied Psychology 93:994-1012. [30] Hesse-Biber and Carter 2005, p. • Lyness, Karen S., and Thompson, Donna 210-211. E.," Above the Glass Ceiling?: A [31] Noble, Barbara (1992-11-22). "At Work; Comparison of Matched Samples of And Now the ’Sticky Floor’". New York Female and Male Executives." New York, Times. NY: Baruch College. fullpage.html?res=9E0CE5D91238F931A15752C1A964958260. • Nevill, Ginny, Alice Pennicott, Joanna Retrieved on 2008-03-31. Williams, and Ann Worrall. 1900. Women [32] Mays, Andy (July 2006). "NCA Cappies in the Workforce: The Effect of Album for "Glass Ceiling"". Cappies. Demographic Changes in the 1990s. London: The Industrial Society. NationalCapitalAreaCappies/ • Ragins, Belle R., Singh, Romila, Cornwell, showcase06/performance/?g2_page=8. John M.; "Making the Invisible Visible: Retrieved on 2007-04-19. Fear and Disclosure of Sexual Orientation at Work." 2007 Milwaukee,University of Wisconsin; New Orleans, Loyola University. • Eagly, Alice H., Carli, Linda L.: Through • Williams CL. The glass Escalator: Hidden the Labyrinth: The truth about how advantages for men in the "female" women become leaders. 2007. professions. Soc Problems. Massachusetts: Harvard Business Press. 1992;39:253-267. • Fox, Mary F. and Sharlene N. HesseBiber. 1984. Women at Work. Mountain View, CA: Mayfield Publishing Company. • Giele, Janet Z. and Leslie F. Stebbins. • Dealing with the Glass Ceiling 2003. Women and Equality in the • Celluloid Ceiling: Behind-the-Scenes Workplace. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, Employment of Women on the Top 250 Inc. Films of 2006 at Movies by Women • Hesse-Biber, Sharlene N. and Gregg L. • Report of the Glass Ceiling Commission Carter. 2005. Working Women in America. (PDF format) New York, NY: Oxford University Press. • Read Congressional Research Service • Insch, Gary S., Nancy McIntyre, and (CRS) Reports regarding Pay Equity Nancy K. Napier. 2008. “The Expatriate • Break The Glass Ceiling Foundation


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