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The average person doesn’t know the name Sheryl Sandberg, though they might have heard it here and there over the years. If anything, they probably know her as the Facebook woman and at this point in her career, she is one of the most powerful women in the world. She is the COO (Chief Operating Officer), or second in command of Facebook. That’s BIG and for a woman in the tech world, that’s HUGE!

I want to highlight her because of her accomplishments, but also because she has been and continues to be an awesome advocate for women encouraging women to stand up for themselves and to speak up. Every day Sandberg models what it is to be a powerful woman.

Sandberg got a BA in economics and an MBA, both at Harvard. and before she began working with Facebook in 2008, she worked in a vice president role at Google and was instrumental in developing Google’s philanthropic side. During the Clinton administration, she worked as Chief of Staff for the U.S. Treasury Department.

When she left that job, she never imagined she would work in the for-profit world, but she could see that “what was changing people’s lives the most was technology.”  She runs the business functions of the company and believes in Facebook. She has grown Facebook into the crazy successful intertwining of people that it is today and continues to influence the way people use and view communication methods in the modern world. In Sandberg’s first 3 years, Facebook grew to 800 million users and $2 billion dollars in annual revenue.

She encourages women to be with a partner who will do half of the work around the house. She says you can’t just be with someone who says they will but then doesn’t, you have to choose someone who actually will do half the work around the house and taking care of the kids, because that’s what it takes to be successful.

“A world where men ran half our homes and women ran half our institutions, would be just a much better world.” Sheryl Sandberg from MAKERS video.

In 2011, she was #5 on Forbes’ list of 100 most powerful women and rightfully so.

Sandberg serves on the boards of The Walt Disney Company, Starbucks, Women for Women International, V-Day, and the Center for Global Development.

In 2010, she did a TED talk and said for women to “Sit at the table.” She continued. “In the corporate sector – women at the top, c-level jobs, board seats – tops out at 15-16%. The numbers have not moved since 2002 and are going in the wrong direction.” She pointed out how women face harder choices between personal success and professional fulfillment. “How do we change those numbers?” she asked. “By keeping women in the workforce… Success and likeability are positively correlated for men and negatively correlated for women,” says Sandberg. “And men are reaching for opportunities more than women.”

That has to change for women to be equal. Sandberg knows it and encourages women to push for those opportunities, to find a job/career that you love and lean into it.

Grrl Code: Reach for the top like Sheryl Sandberg. Women are so often pushed into the dredges of women being against women and of feeling jealous of women like Sandberg and of not wanting other women to succeed. We can’t fall into that and must work to be as passionate as Sandberg, work to fulfill our dreams like she did. Take her as a role model, because she’s awesome and she’s not just powerful, she’s fierce.

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