Technological and social changes will continue to transform aspects of public relations practices for long time. The most dramatic transformation in public relations has been the change from the male dominated field to the female dominated field.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

A glass ceiling: in PR?

Concerning ‘Status’ in the industry, Even though in the last couple of years women such as Diane Dixon, MaryLee Sachs and Helen Ostrowski have risen to the top of their agencies or departments, women in the upper echelons of management are still unusual in the PR industry. A study by D. Meyerson and J.Fletcher that was published in the Harvard Business review found that women only make up 10 percent of the senior managers in the Fortune 500 companies and less than 4 percent of the upper most ranks of CEOs, presidents and executive vice president.

Even though some women in PR have reached the top it is often seen cynically as compensatory feminism. Companies provide top level status to a select numbers of women as mere “window dressing’ without actually involving any real responsibility.

This is often seen at Board level and Cabinet Level of Government, and in itself is a form of PR. This approach is changing and as such most women in the top positions reject the idea of “Velvet Ghetto” as being out dated. Some have raised concerns that public relations is being viewed as “women’s work” and are calling it the “pink ghetto.”

Aedhmar Hynes, CEO of Text 100, commented:

“I have worked damned hard to get to where I am, but so have all the men who are in senior management positions.”


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