Traditionally, the problem of glass ceiling persisted in the society depriving women of the possibility to take top positions in companies and public organizations. In spite of numerous anti-discrimination laws, the situation has not changed consistently today. In this respect, it is possible to refer to the example of one of the largest employers of the US, Wal-Mart. The company still prevents women from entering top positions, whereas the cases of women discrimination in Wal-Mart are frequent and affect mainly promotion and wage discrimination of women. In such a situation, the glass ceiling is still unsurpassable barrier, women working in Wal-Mart cannot overtake.
On analyzing the current situation in Wal-Mart, it is important to place emphasis on the fact that women working in the company face the problem of discrimination based on wage and promotion (Robinson, 1993). To put it more precisely, women receive lower wages compared to men, whereas they have fewer career opportunities compared to men. This means that men are more likely to obtain promotion in the company than women. As a result, women cannot reach top positions in the company because of their discrimination in promotion.
In fact, the situation in Wal-Mart mirrors the full extent, to which the problem of glass ceiling is deep-rooted in the modern society. Women are deprived of the possibility to obtain top positions in Wal-Mart because of specific human resource policies conducted by the company. The company stands on the ground that women are less reliable and successful than men. Therefore, Wal-Mart prefers promoting men instead of women, even though they perform their professional duties well and successfully (Reuter, 2006). In this regard, the policy of the company is vulnerable to the impact of a widely-spread stereotype concerning poor leadership qualities of women. As a result, the company views women as inferior to men in terms of their leadership. Naturally, in such a situation, women cannot take top positions in the company.
In addition, it is important to remember about the total domination in the top management of the company at the moment. The domination of men at top positions in the company at the moment contributes to raising glass ceiling barriers because men attempt to protect their positions in the company excluding women and discriminating their promotion.
At the same time, after the birth of a child, women either lose their position or have to do part-time jobs. In such a situation, women can hardly count for a successful career in Wal-Mart because they have to choose either between uncertain career opportunities or their family and children. Naturally, many women prefer to have children, instead of working in the discriminatory environment (Stopler, 2003). They could make a successful career but the company’s discriminatory policies prevent them from making a successful career. As a result, women have a few options to choose from, including the change of the workplace, which cannot always help because of the existence of glass ceiling in other companies, or to focus on their family.
Thus, the problem of glass ceiling persists in the modern society. In this respect, such large companies as Wal-Mart still conduct discriminatory policies in relation to women preventing them from taking top positions because they are vulnerable to the impact of dominant stereotypes and gender-related biases.
Reuter, A.A. (2006). “Subtle but Pervasive: Discrimination against Mothers and Pregnant Women in the Workplace.” Fordham Urban Law Journal, 33(5), p.1369-1383.
Robinson, M.D. (1993). “Measuring Discrimination against Females: Is the “Non-Discriminatory” Wage the Male or the Female Wage? American Economist. 37(1), p.45-54.
Stopler, G. (2003). “Countenancing the Oppression of Women: How Liberals Tolerate Religious and Cultural Practices That Discriminate against Women.” Columbia Journal of Gender and Law. 12(1), p.154-169.