Glass ceiling had been predominant in its open use in organisations where male dominance is seen as a common denominator since societal values requires men to earn the bread and women to look after the house and children (Davidson and Burke, 2005). These notions changed during the 1960s industrial revolution when women were keenly seen as an important contributor. There was a general need of expanding production with more workers. This encouraged women to start working full time and earn extra money for the household. Requirement for women workers kept growing. They started to compete with men at workplace. Some women even surpassed men’s abilities and skills (Bloch, 2003). Organisations, initially, openly discriminated against women since they were seen a temporary replacement for a permanent employment. Hence, they were always less favoured in most activities in which they were fully eligible. Sophisticated work practices grew and realisation of glass ceiling kept growing as more and more women started to experience workplace discrimination (Broadbridge, 2006). The awareness was for real and grew into a force, which was also supported by the changes in laws that rejected any kind of discrimination. The first generation bias that allowed open discrimination against women had to take a backseat and consider revitalising itself into a more sophisticated model where the glass ceiling would continue to exist but its perception would be invisible.
Cotter et al. (2001) says that the existence of glass ceiling at higher levels was more than at the lower levels of organisational hierarchy. They stress upon the ceiling’s existence in more importance roles where women are often subtly denied the roles of management of executive officers. They are specific about the existence and thriving of glass ceiling by the way job-relevant characteristics are not able to define gender or racial difference. This indicates the subtle nature of glass ceiling. The reasons remain embedded in the patriarchal mind set at workplace and the inability of opening up to the realisation of the discrimination. Ibarra, Ely and Kolb (2013) assert the existence of residual glass ceilings. They are invisible in nature and perception but dominant in their spheres of action. This leads to the invincibility of glass ceiling, because it is practiced in a way which makes it look natural and inevitable rather than intentional and self-interested.
Glass ceiling have had massive resistance since decades because the growth of women had always been stalled after a particular position, beyond which they are deliberately denied promotion, success, important project roles and management roles (Northouse, 2013). In current roles of organisational occupation, almost 75% of men make more pay than women, which indicates the lack of organisational responsibility toward the laws that require them to uphold equality in pay and avoid all kinds of discrimination (Lanier, 2006). Many women have agreed that the environment which, looks great for work and neutral for all gender makes them feel less involved when important projects are executed (Boeri, Del Boca and Pissarides, 2005; Cohn, 2000). Management decides the allocation of roles quite easily on merit. Men are more assertive in their conduct and are accepted as natural be promoted to these roles of importance and accept higher pay. The barrier for women at work is for real. It is impenetrable and imperceptible at times and it is a serious issue for women and the organisations adherence to equality laws across the workplace domain (Glass Ceiling Commission – Good for Business: Making Full Use of the Nation’s Human Capital, 1995).