Corporate America is increasingly aware that gender diversity and inclusion of all groups is good for the bottom line, but the corporate career pipeline for women remains stubbornly leaky, particularly for women of color, meaning women are disappearing from the career and leadership trajectory at every stage of their professional lives. This is according to a curated research report prepared by Bentley University’s Gloria Cordes Larson Center for Women and Business (CWB) to highlight the factors behind the leaky pipeline and dive into interventions for U.S. businesses and for women.

The report notes several primary reasons why the leaky pipeline persists, including early barriers. Entry-level women, for example, start out making 20 percent less than their male peers, and women are 21 percent less likely than male peers to be promoted to the first level of management. Women in mid-career often face unconscious bias against mothers and work-life balance issues. Compared to men, women lack adequate access to career-building relationships such as sponsors, mentors, role models and networks.

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