There prevails a certain hesitation when offering women leadership roles. Most often they are not even considered. A wide-held belief is that companies or institutions are better off with male CEOs. It is, in fact, more a prejudice than an observation.
Then, there is the glass cliff. The term glass cliff is an extension of ‘glass ceiling’ which refers to the invisible hindrances that affect the career growth of women. The glass cliff pertains to the phenomenon where women are seated in positions such as CEO or given any powerful administrative roles during difficult circumstances where the chances of failure are greater. It is an act of using women as scapegoats and placing the blame of any major setback on their shoulders. This term also extends to minorities. Such practices contribute towards reaffirming the stereotype that women are not ‘leader- material’.
Even when offered leadership roles, in most cases, the second shift at home holds women back from accepting them. It becomes a painfully arduous task to manage the household as well as a department/company.
What we are faced with is not a question of how women can become ‘good’ leaders. Leadership is by no means a gendered quality. It, on the other hand, depends on character, confidence and clarity. Anyone with the right motivation and mind-set can become leaders. The question is if women are given the opportunity. Not often and not enough.