Breaking the Glass Ceiling
This essay was written by Frank Hamilton, a guest blogger. I believe his message resonates with many folks interested in how women have become important contributors to society and the workplace.
The nature and history of humankind are very inventive - the story of a woman began with the idea that she was created from the rib of a man, which means she will always occupy a lower position. Millennia later, the world became democratic, recognized the value of human life, regardless of gender, and was practically freed from military confrontations over the territory and women, of course. Women have long received equal rights with men, but barbaric stereotypes still live in people's minds. Meanwhile, modern women are changing their approaches to business, partnerships, and workflows. They are in the midst of changing workplace relationships because of finding a crack in the “glass ceiling.” Here are a few processes that we can observe in the modern world.
They Bridge the Gap Between the Sexes
Gender inequality is such a long-standing but such a pressing topic. Slowly, step by step, successful women overcome the abyss that originally arose between men and women in the workplace. This is a complex process that will drag on for many more decades.
Even in the most civilized and technologically advanced Japan, for example, the employer will give preference to a man, even if his skills and knowledge are identical with the knowledge of a female candidate. We may still encounter unethical questions about family plans and plans for having children when hiring.
Each time, really successful women prove that when it comes to professionalism, intellectual savvy, and ability to solve complex problems, they are able to cope no worse than men. And this process has already moved off the ground - more and more employers are evaluating the candidate's abilities, and not his or her gender. Moreover, there is even a hiring software that allows recruiters to conduct blind interviews to completely cut off subjectivity and prejudice, depending on gender, race, religion, and place of residence.
They Argue That Silence and Patience Are Wrong Strategies
About 50 years ago, it was difficult for women to get the job that they really wanted to have. The dominant opinion of society was still such that the woman’s place was at home, near her children and husband. Even today, this opinion is still alive, although it is not so strong. These public beliefs led to the fact that women were simply afraid of losing the job that they got so hard, and therefore, more and more they were silent, not declaring their needs and desires.
Modern women have become bolder and have realized their professional values. They understand that there are tasks that they objectively fulfill better than men. The modern workplace changes as women talk about their needs, for example, the need to have more comfortable work clothes, or the need to be more flexible so that they can maintain a balance between work and family. Women's desire for flexibility deserves a separate explanation.
They Strive for Maximum Flexibility
Not so long ago, the whole world realized that it is possible to be more flexible if you have no other choice. Women understood this even earlier.
Creating a woman from a man’s rib, nature was right only once when it separated the feminine from the masculine. The feminine has historically told a woman to be family-oriented. Not so long ago, women were forced to make a choice - either to be a numbed shark of a career or to be a quiet housewife. These are two extremes, and women very quickly realized that in the modern world, it is impossible to choose one thing.
That is why the modern image of a successful woman is associated with the image of a flexible woman who knows how to keep a balance, and most importantly, knows how to talk about what she needs - both at the workplace and at home. Here's what Susan, 27, a freelance writer from the Online Writers Rating custom writing review platform website.
“I perfectly understand that our life is too unpredictable. Being flexible at work and at home is the best way to succeed, keep balance, and enjoy the way I live. That is why I’ve switched to freelancing after the birth of my child.”
The glass ceiling is considered to be the biggest barrier to career advancement. What is more, the larger the company, the rarely we can see the women leading it. However, the glass ceiling is not on the top - it is on the bottom.
According to McKinsey’s research, it is especially difficult for women to be promoted to a manager position in the first rung of management. In other words, the first step to career advancement is the most difficult for women - 38% of women vs 62% of men are hired or promoted to become managers.
However, once the first barrier is overcome, it becomes much easier for women to move on. They get the opportunity to show their true abilities, and they do it as we described above - without using imaginary privileges, not keeping silent about problems and remaining flexible.
Women of Color Are Striving for Equality
All-American protests after the murder of a black man by a policeman in early June 2020 have already shown that society is seriously concerned about issues of inequality based on skin color. Society is concerned, but this does not mean that one precedent has completely corrected the situation, and has eradicated the stereotypes that have been forming for centuries.
For African countries, this is considered normal when a woman receives a lower salary than a man, even if they do the same job. In more civilized countries, this trend is also visible, but not so clearly. The biggest obstacle for colored women in the workplace is the glass ceiling that we mentioned above. Their glass ceiling is their skin color. More than 80% of African American, Asian and Latin women admitted that they would like to move up the career ladder, but do not have the opportunity to do so. They receive less support from management, which means they are less likely to reach the next level.
Perhaps this is the most important ethical issue that remains open, and which women have not yet overcome. Ethical standards for women should be the same regardless of their skin color. The only way to achieve this is to eradicate stereotypes at the level of the whole society - in relation to all women without exception.
They Redefine Success to Live Their Own Rules
Of course, the perception and understanding of success will be different for each person, regardless of gender. Modern women also change their understanding of this word, and each of them does it in their own way. For some, success is to be her personal boss; for some, success is to earn more than her husband; for someone, success is simply doing what you like without being attached to material wealth.
Whatever it was, but we can see how society is changing under the influence of these more free views. Now it’s normal to marry or not to marry, to have children, and not to have them, to aim at the highest financial target, or just be yourself.
What awaits the woman at the workplace in the future? Is it possible to achieve complete equality, and most importantly, to eradicate gender and other stereotypes? Modern women prove that this is possible, but certainly, this path will not be easy.
Posted by Steven Mintz, aka Ethics Sage, on July 2, 2020. Find out more about Steve and his services at: https://www.stevenmintzethics.com/. Follow him on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/StevenMintzEthics.