share
by Alex Palmer | September 10, 2014
Rising to the upper levels of the company is of little interest to most workers, a new study from job search website CareerBuilder finds. The study finds that just one-third of employees (34 percent) are interested in rising to leadership positions in the organization and just 7 percent hope to enter senior management or the C-suite.

The survey, conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder, drew on the responses of 3,625 full-time workers in government and the private sector. It covered a wide range of industries, organization sizes, and earnings levels. 

It found that most workers (52 percent) say they are simply satisfied in their current roles, while 34 percent are concerned that a higher position might throw off their work/life balance. Additionally, 17 percent of respondents maintain that their education level is not sufficient for rising the company ranks. 

These sentiments vary across gender, race, and sexual orientation. While 40 percent of men said they desire a leadership role, just 29 percent of women said the same. Additionally African Americans (39 percent) and LGBT (44 percent) workers are more likely to aim for a leadership role than the national average. Hewing closer to the national average in the amount of interest they express for climbing the corporate ladder are workers with disabilities (32 percent) and Latinos (35 percent).

"While most workers don't want a top job, it is important for organizational leaders to promote a culture of meritocracy in which all workers, regardless of gender, race or sexual orientation, are able to reach senior-level roles based on their skills and past contributions alone," said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder, in a statement. "The survey found that employees at companies that have initiatives to support aspiring female and minority leaders are far less likely to say a glass ceiling holds individuals back."