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A letter to the woman promoted off the glass cliff

March 7, 2017
The Globe and Mail

This column is part of Globe Careers’ Leadership Lab series, where executives and experts share their views and advice about leadership and management.

This week’s series of Leadership Labs is being published in conjunction with International Women’s Day.

Pop the champagne! It is time to celebrate. You have finally broken through the glass ceiling. You, a female in North America, have reached a position that few women hold – you were promoted to CEO. Why not pop two bottles? You really do deserve them. However, not for the reason you think. The second bottle is not to celebrate; the second bottle is a coping mechanism to deal with what lies ahead.

What happens after you make it to the top?

In the study Leading at the top: Understanding women’s challenges above the glass ceiling, Christy Glass and Alison Cook analyze the conditions under which women are promoted to top leadership positions and find that women are subject to greater disadvantages than men post-promotion.

What you can expect?

  • A lack of support and respect for your authority to accomplish the company’s strategic goals
  • Shorter tenure compared to your male peers
  • Greater performance pressure and significantly more scrutiny than your male counterparts

It doesn’t sound like a lot of fun but you have the position, so what happens next?

Read the full story

Justin Weinhardt

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