Sheryl Sandberg's Biography "Lean In", Encouraged Women to Seek Challenges

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.

Sheryl Sandberg's Biography book "Lean In" is a great read for any woman or man. Seriously, whether you manage a family, a company, both or neither, this book contains many valuable life lessons about how to work with others in ways that benefit everyone.

The book contains many poignant anecdotes and quotes, but the prevalent theme can be summed up in an Alice Walker quote early in the book, "The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any." Despite the fact that Sandberg wrote this book focused towards and about women, this theme is one all of us would do well to take to heart. And not just in the first person but also from a third person perspective.

Another primary theme throughout the book is communication. Sandberg's statement of the obvious makes a strong case for open communication, "We cannot change what we are unaware of, and once we are aware, we cannot help but change." In Sandberg's plea for women to "lean in" and "sit at the table" referencing the title of the book, she says, "We need to talk and listen and debate and refute and instruct and learn and evolve."

Lean In is a book that advocates equality for women in the workplace. Sandberg, a top executive at Facebook, filled this book with heartfelt pleas for women "to take their seat at the [conference] table". She also offers practical tips for how women can avoid workplace no-nos and sure career killers such as asking every successful woman they meet to be their mentor right after being introduced or quitting a job due to burn out while having weeks of unused vacation time.

Nannies and other household help also figure into the picture for her, and she advocates that women who are still at the beginning of their careers should be willing to pay for whatever childcare they need in order to continue working full time, even if the cost of childcare exceeds their salaries. Unfortunately, not every household can afford to take out loans to cover the cost of childcare in the hopes that Mom's career will take off and she will become a CEO.