Facebook, and other big names. They all seem to go together with Sheryl Sandberg. Her story is amazing. Her communication skills seem to be too. She gets in a room and people listen. She develops, moves and accomplishes things. She has leaned into her ability as a leader. Should you?
If I may, if you would give me a few moments of your time? I would like to share with you my experience with her book “Lean In”. I would like to share with you my major take away.
While her book was full of helpful tips and tricks, while she shared her story to inspire, perhaps a comment that she has penned is my major learn, the reason I’m glad that I leaned into her book.
In talking to potential leaders, she drives home a single comment that has changed how I pursue leadership. Even with years and years of leadership study and practice, I don’t believe I ever ran into such a great, strategic comment.
It is simply this, “It’s hard to visualize someone as a leader if she is always waiting to be told what to do.”
That’s a brilliant statement. That in alone is worth the read. Oooops, I just gave away the magic. No it’s still worth reading, but that statement is brilliant.
I have met so many leaders over the years that complain they are not in charge so they sit and wait. They make claims that if they were in charge, things would be different. I must admit, I’ve been that leader to.
But perhaps, as we have all read at some point in our leadership lives, find what you can lead, and lead. This doesn’t mean you step on your bosses feet in attempt to take their job, but to lead those things you can. To really own those few things well and bring them to new levels.
I must admit that I have leadership lust too. I want to be in charge of things once in a while that I’m not. Sometimes its those things that one day I might in charge of, and other times I will never lead them. But what I have learned is that I can always lead something. Even if it’s smaller than you are hoping for, lead.
This is the wonderful truth about Sandberg’s words. When someone claims to be a leader to me but I don’t see them leading anything, I can’t picture it. This will inevitably inform me on how I will position them in leadership.
So should you lean in? I think you should lean into leadership, and lead. Take Sandberg’s book, give it a read too, it will make you a better leader.