Facebook COO and bestselling author Sheryl Sandberg’s memoir/feminist manifesto, Lean In, is causing quite a stir among working women. If you missed the hype, Sandberg uses her book to address the barriers in women’s minds that keep them from reaching the same levels of professional success as men. Sandberg acknowledges systematic hurdles like work and national policies, along with cultural expectations that inhibit the progress of women. But, she believes women can dismantle these hurdles by changing the way they think.
Sandberg’s critics note that her racial, academic, and economic privilege make it easier for her to put the burden on women to simply try harder to succeed. Many women were “leaning in” long before Sandberg’s book only to bump into a glass ceiling. A study by the League of Black Women found that black women make up only one percent of U.S. corporate officers.
Sandberg’s privilege shouldn’t stop women from applying the principles that brought her success. There are external boundaries inhibiting the success of black women, but that’s even more reason for us to eliminate the ones we inflict on ourselves. Check out these 10 principles from Lean In. Does the way you view yourself hold you back?