Breaking the Glass Ceiling in a Family Business

Breaking the Glass Ceiling in a Family Business
Category: Interviews
Published: November 16, 2020
Updated: November 14, 2023
Views: 13129
Downloads: Full Article PDF

Despite decades of striving and some progress, women still face a glass ceiling in many tradition-bound family businesses.  In this interview with Editor Kimberly Eddleston, Giovanna Campopiano of Lancaster University talks about her research into what holds women back from leadership roles at their family firms. Unfortunately, outdated ideas about primogeniture and a woman's rightful place have not yet gone away, and women still feel too much pressure to prove themselves. However, Campopiano points out that some families are being intentional about giving both sons and daughters the tools they need to be competent and confident leaders. Her advice: use informal family gatherings to introduce younger generations to the business and spur their interests...but encourage children to reflect on what they really want for their careers and respect their choices. 

Kimberly Eddleston
Kimberly Eddleston
Schulze Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship / D'Amore-McKim School of Business / Northeastern University
View Profile

Cite this Article
DOI: 10.32617/580-5fb26c7cf3257
Eddleston, Kimberly. "Breaking the Glass Ceiling in a Family Business." 16 Nov. 2020. Web 20 Apr. 2024 <>.
Eddleston, K. (2020, November 16). Breaking the glass ceiling in a family business. Retrieved April 20, 2024, from