Software CEO On What 'Lean In' Got Wrong About Work-Life Balance

When Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg encouraged women to fully realize their power in her bestselling book "Lean In," females across America perked up and listened. But part of the philosophy didn't sit well with Sabrina Parsons, the CEO of Palo Alto Software.

Parsons saw an interview with Sandberg in which she said that because she's a mother, she liked to leave work promptly at 5 p.m. to see her children, but she would take steps to hide her absence from her colleagues.

"That's exactly what I think we need to change. Why do we have to hide that?" Parsons told HuffPost Live. "[Sandberg is] clearly a super successful, very productive, exceptional woman in the workplace. Why did she feel like for so many years she had to pretend she was in the office when she wasn't?"

Parsons, who says she often brings her children to work with her, further explained her point of view in a piece for Business insider:

While I wholeheartedly agree with Sandberg’s argument that we need to continue to fight to decrease the gender gap in leadership roles in corporate America, I have some reservations about her overall strategy to accomplish it. Sandberg argues that women need to play into workplace norms, and play hard. She believes that women should accommodate the office culture and do whatever it takes to succeed at work — regardless of their personal lives.

I admire her tenacity, and admit that this strategy has worked very well for her. However, I believe there is a better way to approach the gender gap and advance women in leadership roles.

Hear more about Parsons' ideas for the modern working woman in the clip above.

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