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Lean In: Work and the Will to Lead


Review by Mira Khatib

I’ve been asked several times on my opinion on  Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In, and when I replied I haven’t read it, I would get a shocked looked especially knowing my passion and quest on empowering women. Needless to say I went out and got myself a copy and finally sat down and began reading.

Well for you out there who are curious here is my take on the book,

Unlike many reviews out there that do not favor the book and showcasing it only for elite women, my opinion is quite the opposite this is a must read book not just for career women but all women regardless of career, status, or wealth, I also believe men should read it as well to realize the many obstacles many women face to reach success.

Sandberg’s style is simple and honest talking from personal experiences and ones shared with others. I found myself nodding to many of her statements and found a few aha moments along the way. Her message is one of personal responsibility, awareness and motivation.

Here are some of my favorite quotes from her book that made me stop and think:

“The gender stereotypes introduced in childhood are reinforced throughout our lives and become self-fulfilling prophesies. Most leadership positions are held by men, so women don’t expect to achieve them, and that becomes one of the reasons they don’t.”

“Success and likeability are positively correlated for men and negatively for women. When a man is successful, he is liked by both men and women. When a woman is successful, people of both genders like her less.”

“I learned that effective communication starts with the understanding that there is MY point of view, (my truth), and someone else’s point of view (his truth). Rarely is there one absolute truth, so people who believe that they speak THE truth are very silencing of others. When we realize and recognize that we can see things only from our own perspective, we can share our views in a nonthreatening way. Statements of opinion are always more constructive in the first person “I” form. The ability to listen is as important as the ability to speak. Miscommunication is always a two way street.”

“We cannot change what we are not aware of, and once we are aware, we cannot help but change.”

“I hope you find true meaning, contentment, and passion in your life. I hope you navigate the difficult times and come out with greater strength and resolve. I hope you find whatever balance you seek with your eyes wide open. And I hope that you – yes, you – have the ambition to lean in to your career and run the world. Because the world needs you to change it.”

So like Sandberg asks in her book “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” I too ask you to have the courage to open up your mind and heart, to have courage to go after your dreams, and to find your voice and raise it so everyone can hear you loud and clear.

Verdict this book is defiantly worth reading!


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