Discrimination and Affirmative Action Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Discrimination and Affirmative Action


The current study investigates gender discrimination and the relationship between organizational commitment and job satisfaction. Women report through survey questions on how they view gender discrimination against women today, their level of commitment to an organization, and their level of agreement on how satisfied they are in their jobs. The purpose of this study is discussing certain issues that pertain particularly to women, because majority of women's find barriers when moving towards the top.

According to the Federal Glass Ceiling Commission, the definition of glass ceiling refers to "the artificial barriers present in the workplace to the advancement of women and minorities." Regardless of achievements, the glass ceiling is an "unseen" barrier that keeps minorities and women from rising to the top of the corporate ladder. The glass ceiling still persists in today's society even though the equity gap between men and women in managerial careers seems to be decreasing. Despite the Equal Employment Opportunity laws than have been instated for many years, discrimination continues to exist in the United States (Faderman 2005). Women as leaders in the business and public sector continue to be underrepresented in higher executive positions. It is a battle against the traditional organizational culture that males maintain dominance in the workplace as stereotypical leaders.


According to Nelson (2003), compared to men, women still lag behind in salary progression, women's rewards and work conditions (pay, autonomy, authority) are less favourable, women are more likely to work in dead end jobs concentrating in service-oriented and health-care oriented industries (retail, health care, housing, publishing) resulting in less promotions, and women are less likely to be authorities in the workplace. Women comprise 66% of the United States workforce but only hold 21% of middle management positions and 15% of the remaining 42% are at the senior management level. It is argued by scholars that the disproportional under representation of women in managerial positions is due to the glass ceiling effect: blocked opportunities for women. Others argue that it is due to a sticky floor: keeping women in lower paying jobs (Edgar 2004). Regardless of the reason, there are more men in managerial positions than women.

Men still out earn women in pay throughout the world. Even after controlling variables such as education, age, position, level, and job tenure, women's salaries average only 72-88% of male's salaries. Near the close of the 1900 century, men represented 95% of senior executives in the largest publically held United States firms. A recent survey of the Institute of Management Accountants reported females earned less than males on all levels of education, management, and certification (Connerley Pedersen 2005).

Women are often recognized as the victim in gender discrimination in the workplace. They are looked down upon as the gender that must fight to break the glass ceiling in order to succeed against society's predispositions for them (Vallas 2003). As some females have succeeded in reaching the top leadership positions in…

Sources Used in Document:


Connerley M.L. & P.B. Pedersen (2005), Leadership in a diverse and multicultural environment: developing awareness, knowledge, and skills, Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage. Pp. 101-115

Edgar F. & Geare A. (2004), "Employee demographics in human resource management research," Research and practice in human research management, 12(1), 61-91.

Faderman, Lillian, 2005, Surpassing the Love of Men: Romantic Friendship and Love Between Women from the Renaissance to the Present. London: The Women's Press, pp. 167-168

Finnis, John, (2004), "Law, Morality, and 'Sexual Orientation'" Notre Dame Law Review 69: 1049-1076.

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