Research Paper: Women in Management and the Glass Ceiling Has it Been Shattered Models and Best Practices

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Women in Management and the Glass Ceiling

In the last 20 years, women have shattered the glass ceiling that once kept them out of senior management positions in business, politics, and the military. In the current modern world, women have attained more career opportunities and legal rights than men have. Throughout the history of women, motherhood and wifehood was regarded as the most significant profession of women. However, in the 20th Century, women in the U.S. won the legal right of voting and increasing their job and educational opportunities. Women in the 20th century fought to a large degree accomplishing to re-evaluate perceptions towards the role of women in the society (Persons, 1915).

History

During the colonial period, women earned a living by working at boarding houses and tailoring centers. However, some of them were employed as in jobs and professions that were mostly available to men. Women occupied positions such as singers, writers, teachers, preachers, lawyers, and doctors. In the early 19th century, there limited occupation positions availed to women such as domestic work and factory labor. Women were not allowed to hold professional positions apart from teaching. In the 20th and 19th centuries, attitudes towards the roles of women changed with the medical field being a key example. Some fields were regarded as not suitable for women. Before 18th century, medical schools did not exist; anyone was allowed to practice medicine. In fact, women dominated the obstetrics area (Bullard & Wright, 1993).

In the beginning of 19th century, the requirements for enrolling in the practice of medicine rose. This prevented many married and single women from pursuing the practice, especially those who engaged in early marriages and pregnancies from pursuing professional careers. Conversely, nursing was highly regarded as an occupation for women, but men exclusively conducted nursing in all the hospitals. Women began to be discriminated. For instance, the American association of medics barred women form being members. This association also barred women from attending medical colleges meant for men and women had to enroll in their own. However, women began to attend various leading medical colleges and by early 1920s, they began to be admitted at the American association of medics (Smith, Caputi & Crittenden, 2012).

Most women who are still working are employed in factory work, clerical positions, service jobs, and retail sales. Accountants, typists, bookkeepers, and secretaries were large positions reserved for women. Women working in factories often held positions of inspectors, assemblers, and machine operators. Women working in service jobs were employed as hairdressers, cleaners, hospital attendants, cooks, and servers. In times of war, women worked in the armed forces (Bullard & Wright, 1993). During World War II, most women served in the U.S. Navy and Army performing non-combatant jobs such as nurses, typists, and secretaries.

Many U.S. women fought in the World War II as underground resistance. Along with men, women were employed in the U.S. army and were given combating training. They constituted 50% of the employees of the U.S. army, even though they had limited choices with respect to decision making in the army (Burke & Vinnicombe, 2006). In the recent centuries, the percentage of women hired as administrators, managers, and officials has been on the rise. In deed, there is a slight difference between the number of women and men employees holding similar positions. Despite the fact that the equal pay act advocated for equal pay to people who did the same job, men were paid 50% higher than women for the same job were. Professional women were not given important promotions and assignments accorded to their male counterparts. Women recorded many cases of sexual discrimination at the workplace (Leeming, 1993).

In the 1980s, men who had working wives spent less time on household work than men whose wives spent all their time at home. Maternity was a vital issue for most women, or even some time off to rest after childbirth. According to the federal law, a full time employee was entitled to his/her job after a time off. However, by 1990s, very few states held the requirement that employees were to be paid for their time off. Countries such as Australia, Brazil, German, India, and Mexico required that employees must be granted three months maternity leave with full salary (Eddleston, Veiga & Powell, 2006).

III. Physiological differences between men and women

The female body prefers energy derived from fats while the male body obtains energy from burning high amounts of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. When a woman trains for size and strength, her body grows aerobic muscle fibers while a man who engages in Wight lifting develops power fibers in a disproportional manner. Similarly, a man who is involved in working out similar to a woman is likely to show sign of catabolism and muscles breaking down after completing the exercise (Bell & Nkomo, 1992).

Such physiological variations are necessary in determining the exercises that are effective in producing maximum results concerning women. The chosen exercise listed covers the entire body with no order applied. Female weight trainers use it in training women. Such exercises are responsible for recruiting maximum levels of fibers and muscles, as well as put emphasis on fibers responsible for gaining strength. Improved muscle growth and fibers can be attained in men through emphasizing on the use of heavier loads (Smith, Caputi & Crittenden, 2012).

The above physiological differences between men and women are vital when making decisions on what jobs women should do and what they should eat. They make great impacts on everything including cardiovascular intensity, the amount of protein and carbohydrate people need and how long they can spend at the workplace. For instance, since women do not easily develop type b fibers, they tend to be fast in responding to movements such as explosive plyometrics, sprints, and power moves. Additionally, differences in hormones between women and men imply that men are capable of performing strenuous jobs while women cannot. Research indicates that women are incapable of performing heavy work because they do not have strong muscle, as men (Burke & Davidson, 2000).

IV. Psychological differences

Men are more aggressive in different settings; in addition, men are more aggressive than their female counterparts are. Studies reveal that men are somehow aggressive in the intention of hurting other people. In turn, they end up hurting themselves or controlling other people by means of arousing fear. The degree of hurting other people varies from physical violence to vindictive (Leeming, 1993).

Researchers have argued that women and men may be equally aggressive in their motives of hurting other people at the workplace. However, they may have different ways of showing their aggression. This hypothesis has been explained in two distinct hypotheses. The first hypothesis has addressed the reinforcement of different aggression forms. Women employees are allowed to use subtle ways in showing hostility towards other employees (Eddleston, Veiga & Powell, 2006). On the contrary, men employees are likely to use physical aggression; they believe this is the most appropriate form of showing aggression towards other employees. Men and women have different behaviors while socializing at the workplace. As the second approach, anxieties related to aggression re put into perspective. Female employees are hired with the expectation that they will not behave in a certain manner. When they engage in aggressive behaviors, they are punished as a way of discouraging other employees form engaging in similar aggressive behaviors. This suggests that female employees have built great aggression anxieties and they have great inhibitions against showing aggressive behaviors. Studies reveal that when non-physical and indirect aggression forms are evaluated, the results do not show compelling evidence of the variations between men and women aggression at the workplace. Nevertheless, men have displayed more verbal and physical aggression at the workplace (Burke & Vinnicombe, 2006).

With the aforementioned psychological variations of aggression, these behaviors affect the structuring of working relationships. Men are more likely to be violent at the work place while women are more expected to respond with violent imagery to cues of achievement in the workplace. These variations are based on the concept that men are incapable of perceiving social relationships at the workplace while women are good at inhibiting assertion and aggression. Researchers have speculated that aggression and competition are intertwined at the workplace; working women fear that men are attempting to dominate and hurt them at the workplace thus they see men as opponents (Persons, 1915).

At different places of work, men are likely to project achievements based on their level of aggression while women are more likely to project achievement based on affiliation. Achievements associated with affiliations involve close relationships at places of work. Women and men have different perceptions regarding danger. Men having close relationships with other employees are likely to engage in violence while the reverse for women is true. These variations are associated with how men view danger in intimacy while women view danger as isolated working relationships. Men view danger as betrayal or rejection by other employees, which elicits… [END OF PREVIEW]

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