Sheryl Sandberg is a technology executive, activist, and author. She is the chief operating officer of Facebook and founder of Leanin.org (also known as the Lean In Foundation). In 2012, she was elected to the board of directors by the existing board members, becoming the first woman to serve on Facebook’s board. Before she joined Facebook as its COO, Sheryl was vice president of global online sales and operations at Google, and was involved in launching Google’s philanthropic arm Google.org. Before Google, Sandberg served as chief of staff for United States Secretary of the Treasury Lawrence Summers. In 2012, she was named in the Time 100, an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.
These are some of the books recommended and favoured by her.
1. A Short Guide to a Happy Life
Author: Anna Quindlen
Summary: The book reflects on what it takes to “get a life”—to live deeply every day and from your own unique self, rather than merely to exist through your days. “Knowledge of our own mortality is the greatest gift God ever gives us,” Quindlen writes, “because unless you know the clock is ticking, it is so easy to waste our days, our lives.” Her mother died when Quindlen was nineteen: “It was the dividing line between seeing the world in black and white, and in Technicolor. The lights came on for the darkest possible reason. . . . I learned something enduring, in a very short period of time, about life. And that was that it was glorious, and that you had no business taking it for granted.” But how to live from that perspective, to fully engage in our days? In A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Quindlen guides us with an understanding that comes from knowing how to see the view, the richness in living.
Quote: “But you are the only person alive who has sole custody of your life. Your particular life. Your entire life. Not just your life at a desk, or your life on the bus, or in the car, or at the computer. Not just the life of your mind, but the life of your heart.”
Author: Tina Fey
Summary: Once in a generation a woman comes along who changes everything. Tina Fey is not that woman, but she met that woman once and acted weird around her. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon – from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we’ve all suspected: you’re no one until someone calls you bossy.
Trivia: Sheryl Sandberg wanted to ban the word “bossy” to encourage women to seek more leadership roles.
Best quote: “My unsolicited advice to women in the workplace is this. When faced with sexism, or ageism, or lookism, or even really aggressive Buddhism, ask yourself the following question: ‘Is this person in between me and what I want to do?’ If the answer is no, ignore it and move on. Your energy is better used doing your work and outpacing people that way. Then, when you’re in charge, don’t hire the people who were jerky to you.”
3. Conscious Business
Subtitle: How to Build Value Through Values
Author: Fred Kofman
Summary: Consciousness is the main source of organizational greatness. Conscious business, explains Fred Kofman, means finding your passion and expressing your essential values through your work. A conscious business seeks to promote the intelligent pursuit of happiness in all its stakeholders. It produces sustainable, exceptional performance through the solidarity of its community and the dignity of each member.”Conscious Business” presents breakthrough techniques to help you achieve: Unconditional responsibility how to become the main character of your life, Unflinching integrity how to succeed beyond success, Authentic communication how to speak your truth, and elicit others’ truths, Impeccable commitments how to coordinate actions with accountability, Right leadership how being, rather than doing, is the ultimate source of excellence, A conscious business fosters personal fulfillment in the individuals, mutual respect in the community, and success in the organization.
Trivia: Sheryl Sandberg regularly recommends this book to Facebook employees.
Quote: “Have you ever driven down the highway on cruise control, engaged in a conversation or daydreaming, only to realize you missed your exit? You didn’t literally lose consciousness, but you dimmed your awareness. Relevant details, such as your location and the actions needed to reach your goal, receded from the forefront of your mind Your eyes were open, but you didn’t see. This is a poor way to drive–and an even poorer way to live.”
4. Home Game
Subtitle: An Accidental Guide to Fatherhood
Author: Michael Lewis
Summary: Michael Lewis thought he’d seen it all. He’d worked in the city. He knew how to deal with the worst excesses of human behaviour. He had cojones. Right?
Wrong. He was about to become a father: ‘If you remembered what new parenthood was actually like you wouldn’t go around lying to people about how wonderful it is, and you certainly wouldn’t ever do it twice.’
Here Lewis reveals his own unique take on new-found paternity: from discovering your three-year-old loves swearing to the ethics of taking your offspring gambling at the races, from toilet-training to the inevitable tantrums – of both parent and child – and the gradual realization that, despite everything, he’s becoming hooked: ‘I know for a fact that my children are insane. Or, at any rate, I know that if an adult behaved as my children do, he would be institutionalized. Is it possible that they are contagious?’
Quote: “Memory loss is the key to human reproduction. If you remembered what new parenthood was actually like you wouldn’t go around lying to people about how wonderful it is, and you certainly wouldn’t ever do it twice.”
5. Now, Discover Your Strengths
Authors: Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton
Quote: “From this point of view, to avoid your strengths and to focus on your weaknesses isn’t a sign of diligent humility. It is almost irresponsible. By contrast the most responsible, the most challenging, and, in the sense of being true to yourself, the most honorable thing to do is face up to the strength potential inherent in your talents and then find ways to realize it.”
Find the book here: Amazon
6. Queen of Fashion
Subtitle: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution
Author: Caroline Weber
Summary: Marie Antoinette has always stood as an icon of supreme style, but surprisingly none of her biographers have paid sustained attention to her clothes. In Queen of Fashion, Caroline Weber shows how Marie Antoinette developed her reputation for fashionable excess, and explains through lively, illuminating new research the political controversies that her clothing provoked. Weber surveys Marie Antoinette’s “Revolution in Dress,” covering each phase of the queen’s tumultuous life, beginning with the young girl, struggling to survive Versailles’s rigid traditions of royal glamour (twelve-foot-wide hoopskirts, whalebone corsets that crushed her organs). As queen, Marie Antoinette used stunning, often extreme costumes to project an image of power and wage war against her enemies. Gradually, however, she began to lose her hold on the French when she started to adopt “unqueenly” outfits (the provocative chemise) that, surprisingly, would be adopted by the revolutionaries who executed her.
Quote: “Although, as many scholars have pointed out, she did not evince a sustained interest in politics qua broad-reaching international or domestic policy, it is my belief that she identified fashion as a key weapon in her struggle for personal prestige, authority, and sometimes mere survival.”
Find the book here: Amazon
7. The Lean Startup
Subtitle: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
Author: Eric Ries
Summary: ‘The Lean Start up- How Constant Innovation Creates Radically Successful Businesses’ is a book that explains how to work on your innovative concepts as businessman through moments of anxiety and dilemma. The way to start a company has changed drastically over the time and this book will explain you how to utilize this change to our benefit. The book provides the plan, how a ‘startup’ is a company devoted to creating something innovative under circumstances of extreme uncertainty. As per author Every one of us has one thing in common and that is to clear the way of uncertainty and reach the target of having a sustainable, unbeaten and balanced company.
Quote: “The first problem is the allure of a good plan, a solid strategy, and thorough market research. In earlier eras, these things were indicators of likely success. The overwhelming temptation is to apply them to startups too, but this doesn’t work, because startups operate with too much uncertainty. Startups do not yet know who their customer is or what their product should be. As the world becomes more uncertain, it gets harder and harder to predict the future. The old management methods are not up to the task. Planning and forecasting are only accurate when based upon a long, stable operating history and a relatively static environment. Startups have neither.”