Fi 1 Reading Rainbow Ceiling

What We’re Reading: Breaking the Rainbow Ceiling by Layla McCay

Published by
06th June 2024

There was no better time then Pride Month to grab a copy of Layla McCay’s brand new book, Breaking the Rainbow Ceiling: How LGBTQ+ People Can Thrive and Succeed at Work.

Dr Layla McCay is the Director of Policy at the NHS Confederation, and trained as a psychiatrist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, later sitting on the Trust Board.

Her latest book focuses on the challenges facing LGBTQ+ professionals as they navigate their careers, and was inspired by a chance encounter she had with an acquaintance. This person had mentioned to her that he had previously sat on an interview panel at which someone had recommended not selecting Layla for the job because she was gay. Hearing this had sparked a spiral into looking back at previous unsuccessful interviews, wondering if her queerness had played a role in those, too. This was what set her on the path to discover the extent to which this type of discrimination happens in the workplace today – and so this book was born.

McCay discovered that there are currently only four LGBTQ+ CEOs across all Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 companies who are openly out at work, and just 0.8% of Fortune 500 board positions are filled by LGBTQ+ people. This is in stark contrast to the fact that it is estimated that there is somewhere between 4% and 20% of LGBTQ+ people worldwide, highlighting the sizable gap in representation in executive positions.

Breaking the Rainbow Ceiling explores the hidden differences that cause LGBTQ+ people to be underrepresented at the most senior levels of professional life. By combining data with personal insights from 40+ prominent LGBTQ+ trailblazers, Layla delves deep into the challenges that LGBTQ+ people commonly encounter as they find their way in working environments, and offers practical strategies and solutions to help empower LGBTQ+ people to reach their full professional potential.

This book acts as an important guide for everyone – boards, CEOs, managers, HR professionals – on how they can recognize and address barriers and build a more inclusive workplace where everyone is given the opportunity to thrive.

At OrgShakers, we believe that inclusion is at the heart of every successful business, and so if you would like guidance in creating tailored and effective LGBTQ+ inclusion strategies, please get in touch with us.  

In the meantime, to grab a copy of Breaking the Rainbow Ceiling, head over here for the US and here for the UK.

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