Who you marry is your most important career decision: Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg - Technical.ly Philly

Business

Apr. 8, 2013 8:30 am

Who you marry is your most important career decision: Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg

Sandberg stopped in Center City yesterday morning on a book tour for the buzzy "Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead." Here's what Technically Philly learned.

Sheryl Sandberg wants to outlaw the word “bossy.”

Next time someone calls your little girl “bossy,” the Facebook COO advised, in a punchline she used on the ‘Daily Show’ too: Say “My daughter has executive leadership skills.”

Sandberg stopped in Center City yesterday morning on a book tour for the buzzy “Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead.” The event, held at the Hyatt at the Bellevue on South Broad Street, was packed — more than 1,000 people registered, a spokeswoman said — and yes, the audience appeared to be mostly women.

Sandberg was charismatic and funny, often causing widespread laughter. Her talk felt confessional:  Yes, I’ve been divorced, she said. And I’m OK. She even shouted out the local nonprofit TechGirlz, while talking about how to increase the number of women involved in computer science.

Sheryl Sandberg at Center City's Hyatt at the Bellevue yesterday. Photo by Clem Murray for Philly.com Sheryl Sandberg at Center City’s Hyatt at the Bellevue yesterday. Photo by Clem Murray for Philly.com

Here are a few points that stood out to us.

  • What would you do if you weren’t afraid? It’s written on a poster at Facbook HQ and one of Sandberg’s most quoted soundbytes, but it also sounds a lot like the startup maxim “Fail fast.” Women have the “holy trinity of fear,” she said to much laughter, “being a bad wife, mother and daughter.” Failing is OK, she said, use her first marriage, which ended in divorce, as an example.
  • “Who you marry is the single most important career decision you make,” she said. Sandberg’s point is that a woman can’t succeed without a supportive partner, but the extreme nature of the statement had some on Twitter raising their (Twitter) eyebrows.
  • “Don’t wait for a mentor to excel,” Sandberg wrote in her book. “Excel and you’ll get a mentor.” Sandberg encouraged women to find mentors by offering to help those people, not by simply asking someone you admire to play that role. “Mentorship is a two-way relationship,” she said.
  • Sandberg didn’t acknowledge or respond to any questions, if there were any (they were submitted via local real-time Q&A software Yorn), about the critiques surrounding her book. Read one here by PhillyMag senior editor Sandy Hingston and another one from a former Facebook employee. Sandberg almost did not allow press at the event, according to a spokeswoman from the Arts & Business Council, which co-organized the event with the Free Library and Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce.
  • Ditch the phrases “work-life balance” and “having it all,” she said, because they’re only used to refer to women. –Something else male Technically Philly followers on Twitter countered.
  • Bosses should openly talk about the issues that working women face, Sandberg said, instead of pretending they don’t exist.
  • What is holding women back from leadership positions is the same thing that’s holding them back from computer science: “stereotype threat,” the sociological term that means that if women are made to think that they don’t make good leaders or programmers, they’ll believe it and turn away from those roles.

The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Karen Heller‘s recap is here and WHYY’s Maiken Scott’s is here.

Advertisement

-30-
VIEW COMMENTS

Advertisement

Here’s who’s pitching at Black Girl Ventures’ Boss Up! competition

Women in Digital launches Philly chapter

For traveling jiu-jitsu heads, tech comes to the rescue

SPONSORED

Philly

UX, UArts and the importance of human-centered design

Malvern, PA

Vanguard

Vanguard | Technical Lead-Full Stack

Apply Now
Malvern, PA

Vanguard

Vanguard | Java Developer-Entry

Apply Now
Malvern, PA

Vanguard

Vanguard | Product Owner of Data Science Solutions

Apply Now

Philly’s Overwatch team made it to the playoffs, will face Boston

Brazen Brigade creates community, visibility for women at PHL Innovation Picnic

These 6 teams will vie for $10,000 in prizes from TrafficCast

SPONSORED

Philly

Pitch to win up to $360,000 in funding at WeWork’s Creator Awards

Malvern, PA

Vanguard

Vanguard | Sr. Full Stack Developer-Client Experience Lab

Apply Now
Chesterbrook, PA

Deacom

Deacom | Creative Marketing Writer

Apply Now
Chesterbrook, PA

Deacom

EDI Specialist

Apply Now

Sign-up for daily news updates from Technical.ly

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!