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Gender Work Issues in Two Companies

The analysis will focus, for clarity on one industry -- commercial airlines. The data will concern the role of women at Delta Airlines in the United States and Air France in France.

Moshavi, writing in Business Week (1998) provides a thorough analysis of the "Glass Ceiling" as a hidden or unstated barrier to advancement within a corporation. She concludes that "Among all women, top reasons for leaving were, in order: inflexibility; glass-ceiling issues, such as not being valued; unpleasant environment; and lack of challenge. Black women felt far more affected by the glass ceiling and racial discrimination than other groups. Hispanic women had the fewest complaints" (Moshavi, 1998, 14).

The pertinent data for Air France, as shown on Hoover's Online, reveals that after years of unsuccessfully operating as a state-owned airline, the company has been privatized and is on an upward growth curve. Of the company's 1999 employee figure of 55,199, more than two-thirds are women. And judging from the company's web site, the airline is actively recruiting women. However, when one examines the top officers of the airline, it is revealed that not one woman is in a senior management position.

On May 25, 2000, however, that apparent denial of women in top executive positions was modified somewhat when Joan Juliet Buck, Chief Editor of Vogue Paris, was named Ex


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