A rising tide of women floats all men’s boats, says Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. More gender parity in the workplace means more economic gain for everyone, ample time for men to be fathers, and it turns women on in the bedroom.
Along with Adam Grant, professor at the Wharton School of business at the University of Pennsylvania, Sandberg is writing a four-part series on gender equality for The New York Times. In the latest installment, she appeals to men’s self-interest, debunking the fear that men lose out when more women succeed.
Having more women in upper levels of management has historically meant more innovation and greater share value, as an analysis demonstrates of 1,500 Standard & Poor’s companies over 15 years. And when companies succeed, everyone who works for them succeeds. Equality is not a zero-sum game, says Sandberg.
When Jane Diplock recently sat down with Big Think — Diplock is the former chair of the New Zealand SEC — she discussed the correlation between profitability and having an equal number of men and women on corporate boards:
“[If] we actually had full female participation [in Australia’s economy], we would improve the country’s performance by 12 percent, the productivity of the country. Now suddenly, that gets even the most, let me say, misogynist person interested. … It’s this productivity argument that is moving some of the people to understand that it is their fiduciary duty to do that for the productivity of their enterprise and for the productivity of the nation.”
When men and women share more of life’s responsibilities, future generations reap the benefits, says Sandberg. When only men give themselves to their career, it means they spend less time being fathers. And many studies have shown that having caring, patient, and attending fathers make children, especially boys, more likely to be successful in the future. When parents share duties, girls benefit too: they are less likely to limit themselves to having stereotypically female aspirations.
Then Sandberg discusses what she affectionately calls Choreplay, or “Lean In Laundry.” Again, when household duties are more equitably distributed, and couples spend more time working and doing housework, they tend to have more sex. In other words, couples who work hard also play hard. So men, what have you got to lose? Just a little sleep, says Sandberg.