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Women on the “Glass Cliff”

Research Shows Why Struggling Organizations Are Likely to Hire Female CEOs

By Barbara Ruland, Communications Specialist

Patricia Russo was appointed to Lucent Technologies in 2002. Mary Barra was hired to General Motors in 2014. Marissa Mayer was appointed CEO to Yahoo in 2012.

What do all of these women have in common? All were tapped to lead organizations that were seen as failing.

SIOP Member Yael Oelbaum wondered why women are asked to take over faltering businesses. She used a combination of financial and media analysis to search for answers.

The term “glass cliff” is a metaphor for the practice of placing women leaders in the precarious position at the top of troubled organizations, first used by English researchers in 2004.

“Some are calling the advancement of Theresa May to prime minister in Britain as the latest example,” Oelbaum said....Read more


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