By now you have heard the buzz about Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In. She is listed as one of the 50 most powerful women in Business.
I really enjoyed her TED talk and you can watch it here on why we have too few women leaders.
As a women in thought leadership, I would recommend you read this book so you are aware of the conversations about it, and you can make up your own mind about the contents.
For me, I didn’t find anything ground breaking or leading edge, however you will find some phenomenal research regarding women and their careers.
If you are a women leader, add this book to your ever-growing nightstand pile and invest some time to skim the chapter headings and find a few that appeal to you.
I think the conversation of having a seat at the table is old news. Women have not only been sitting at the table, they are leading many of the conversations around the world.
Whether you work in a corporation or you work for yourself, we are not called as much to lean in … but to step up! As leaders we need to step into our brilliance, share our expertise, inspire and motivate others by our example – we are called to lead.
A few sections I did enjoy in this book include:
• Careers are a jungle gym – not a ladder – I loved her metaphor because ladders we can go up or down, but jungle gyms require more creative exploration.
• Having it all – perhaps the greatest trap ever set for women was coining this phrase. Because no matter what any of us has – and how grateful we are for what we have – no one has it all.
• As women must be more empowered at work, men must be more empowered at home. In my experience, anyone who wants her partner (male or female) must treat them as an equal – a partner … that means household stuff too.
• Don’t leave before you leave – of all the ways women hold themselves back, perhaps the most pervasive is that they leave before they leave. Ladies, stay committed, keep taking action and don’t check out early.
• Communication works best when combined with appropriateness with authenticity, finding that sweet spot where opinions are not brutally honest but delicately honest. I liked the way she phrased that.
I had heard Madeleine Albright at the Philadelphia Governor’s Women in Leadership conference many years ago say ‘there is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women’ – it was the quote of the conference. As women leaders our role is to step up, to lead the way for others and to help them on their journey.
Did you read the book? What did you think? How can you step up more?
Share your ideas with us here on our blog.
PS. If you want more ideas on how to increase your productivity – check out other blogs here and several eBooks you can share with your team.