In The Media
March 10, 2013
Thirty years after women became 50 percent of the college graduates in the United States, men still hold the vast majority of leadership positions in government and industry. This means that women's voices are still not heard equally in the decisions that most affect our lives.Read more...
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Thirty years after women became 50 percent of the college graduates in the United States, men still hold the vast majority of leadership positions in government and industry. This means that women's voices are still not heard equally in the decisions that most affect our lives. In "Lean In, " Sheryl Sandberg examines why women's progress in achieving leadership roles has stalled, explains the root causes, and offers compelling, commonsense solutions that can empower women to achieve their full potential.
Sandberg is the chief operating officer of Facebook and is ranked on "Fortune"'s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business and as one of "Time"'s 100 Most Influential People in the World. In 2010, she gave an electrifying TEDTalk in which she described how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. Her talk, which became a phenomenon and has been viewed more than two million times, encouraged women to "sit at the table," seek challenges, take risks, and pursue their goals with gusto.
In "Lean In, " Sandberg digs deeper into these issues, combining personal anecdotes, hard data, and compelling research to cut through the layers of ambiguity and bias surrounding the lives and choices of working women. She recounts her own decisions, mistakes, and daily struggles to make the right choices for herself, her career, and her family. She provides practical advice on negotiation techniques, mentorship, and building a satisfying career, urging women to set boundaries and to abandon the myth of "having it all." She describes specific steps women can take to combine professional achievement with personal fulfillment and demonstrates how men can benefit by supporting women in the workplace and at home.
Written with both humor and wisdom," " Sandberg's book is an inspiring call to action and a blueprint for individual growth. "Lean In" is destined to change the conversation from what women can't do to what they can.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2013-01-21
- Reviewer: Staff
Facebook COO Sandberg examines the dearth of women in major leadership positions, and what women can do to solve the problem, in this provocative tome. While acknowledging that women have made great strides in the business world, she posits that they still have a long way to go and lays out a plan for women to get there. “I have written this book to encourage women to dream big, forge a path through the obstacles, and achieve their full potential,” she explains. The author’s counsel—gleaned from her own experiences—includes suggestions for increasing self-confidence, particularly in the business world; understanding the role of mentors and how to identify them; building emotional relationships at work; not focusing on being liked; juggling marriage and children with a demanding job; and the importance of taking risks. “Hard work and results should be recognized by others, but when they aren’t, advocating for oneself becomes necessary,” Sandberg opines. A new generation of women will learn from Sandberg’s experiences, and those of her own generation will be inspired by this thoughtful and practical book. Agent: Jennifer Rudolph Walsh. (Mar.)
Advice for women in the workplace
“The blunt truth is that men still run the world.” A baker’s dozen years into the 21st century, despite all the strides women have made toward equality (and despite being half the population), the female gender remains starkly underrepresented in leadership roles. Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In is a rallying cry for both genders to continue the hard work of previous generations toward a more equitable division of voice, power and leadership.
Currently the chief operating officer at Facebook, Sandberg also had a high-intensity position at Google when her first child was born, and she fully recognizes the hurdles involved, and the balancing act required, when a woman has a career and a family. After a brief three months “off,” she recalls the heartache of separating from her newborn: “I was returning to a job I loved, but as I pulled the car out of the driveway to head to the office for my first full day back, I felt tightness in my chest and tears started to flow down my cheeks.” But she heralds both Google and Facebook as progressive, flexible companies, and believes that other industries, seeing the success of these family-friendly models, are following suit. Improvements in technology that allow work to be done from anywhere with an Internet connection are also changing the way companies think about office hours and working from home.
Men’s roles are evolving, too, which Sandberg celebrates. “A truly equal world would be one where women ran half our countries and companies and men ran half our homes. I believe that this would be a better world,” she writes. She admits that a perfect 50/50 division of labor at home is not an easy accomplishment, but she unabashedly credits her husband’s willingness to be an equal partner as they tackle life and career challenges together as being essential to her peace of mind and success.
Told with candor and filled with a mix of anecdote and annotated fact, Lean In inspires women to find their passion, pursue it with gusto and “lean in” to leadership roles in the workplace and the world. “Women should be able to pursue professional success and personal fulfillment—and freely choose one, or the other, or both,” she says. And with chapters such as “The Myth of Doing It All,” “Seek and Speak Your Truth” and “Make Your Partner a Real Partner,” she lays out a practical, tangible (but flexible!) framework for making that possible.