Sunday, May 11, 2014

#132 / Lean In 2.0 (Community Version)

I haven't yet read Lean In, the bestseller written by Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook's CEO. If you credit recent political analyses, Sandberg will soon be a U.S. Senator or President, though she is downplaying that possibility

By all accounts, Lean In is an inspiring book, and it has sold more than 1.75 million copies, at least according to an article in the San Jose Mercury News

That Mercury News article, which appeared in the paper on April 9th, was titled "Lean In 2.0." The point of the article was to illuminate how women readers could actually implement the book's instructions, to advance into leadership positions in the workplace. As Sandberg put it in her interview:

The most common question I get is "I really want to 'Lean In,' but how?"

How do you do it? Sandberg is recommending "Lean In Circles," small groups of women who support each other. 

This same prescription, in a community context, was advertised long ago by Margaret Mead. Come to think of it, the American Revolution owed a lot to the same technique

I think individual advancement in the workplace is important, and perhaps for women especially, given prevailing conditions of gender inequality. Thus, creating "Lean In Circles" sounds like a good idea to me.

I continue to think, however, that our main problems are not "individual" but come on a community level. The answer, for political/community progress is the same one Sandberg identifies: "small groups of thoughtful, committed citizens" (Mead) and "Committees of Correspondence" (the American Revolution). 

Someone is going to have to write the "Community Version" of Lean In, and get that idea out!

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