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I feel I want to state something in recent light of the media attention that is given to it. The glass ceiling is a myth, it just doesn't exist.
What does exist is the inability to do a job correctly efficiently and on time. These are attributes and qualities that all business managers look for in there employees. However the business world can be hostile place where only the strong survive and the weak either end up getting out, or staying in the low level positions from where it's difficult to progress.
Business is not about holding peoples hands as they move to the next level, that's something you get in the schools of today and incidentally another reason why a lot of school leavers have a nasty shock when they start work for the first time. But that aside, business doesn't have the time or patience to promote up through its ranks equal numbers of men and women. It demands only the best from the workforce regardless of sex or race. If racism or sexism is an important issue in your work place then don't start pointing the finger at this so called "glass ceiling" excuse. Go out and get some good legal advice then take action directly if the problem is that bad.
Don't look at men and say "It's not fair that men get employed over women"
There are decisions that we all have consider very carefully in life whether you are male or female. If you're a woman looking to start a family but also want to have a career, you need to think about what's really important first. Don't look at men and say "It's not fair that men get employed over women" because it's utter nonsense. Men don't get employed above women because of their gender, they get promoted quicker because they work more aggressively. I'm not to saying that there aren't women out there who work in this way too, there are just less women than men that strive as hard for the goals. We see ambitious women all the time on TV, Ruth Badger for instance. But the sad fact of the matter is that women are designed by nature to breed, men on the other hand are naturally hunter gatherers. This is a fact and something we must carry on with unless some bizarre mutation in our gene pool, makes us asexual. This is quite unlikely to happen so why don't we just play to our strengths?
I have supported maternity leave mothers for about 10 years now in various jobs. Basically they leave and I have had fill the position until they come back or someone new takes over. Higher management don't mind women having children at all and more often than not are very accommodating. However, having children will stunt your career. There is no doubt about this. One of the reasons for this is that business moves forward and for the 6 to 12 months you take out of your career things will have moved on at work. There is a lot of catching up to do after a prolonged absence and from personal experience, the mothers that come back tend to work for about a week or two and then quit to bring up there children. There isn't a glass ceiling though, it's just a choice at the end of the day.
There's a part of this government (Harriet Harmon perhaps?), that appears to want to make women equal to men, but without the hard work men have put in and to me this is wrong. Having a child isn't a handicap, it's just a decision that people make. Yet there seems to be a kind of "positive discrimination" leaking out of the government and it stinks of feminism. I have no problem with any sex, race, colour, orientation trying to get on in life and create a future for themselves. I think as long as you put in the required amount of work, you will reap the benefits. But if there is positive discrimination within business, you will end up with a number of under qualified people running things which can only be a bad thing.
So please don't listen to Harriet Harman and her feminist BULL.