As [Sheryl] Sandberg laboriously notes [in her bestseller "Lean In"], Harvard Business School, which already famously focused on teamwork and consensus, has lately emphasized teamwork even more. It’s hard to imagine Thatcher (“Defeat? I do not recognize the word”) thriving at HBS.IN THE COMMENTS: MayBee asks: "What is with this annoying attempt to get people to use the phrase 'lean in'?" I've been irked by this too. Obviously, Sandberg was trying to sell her book and came up with something she wanted to make into a meme, but how did she get so many media people to adopt it?
The result of the collaborative culture is that corporations or government institutions focus intensely on internal culture and pour their energy into achieving minuscule policy changes relating to workplace efficiency, gender or race. The great victory with which future Thatcher biographers are likely to open their accounts is her winning back the Falkland Islands from the Argentine junta. The great victory with which Sandberg opens her book was getting Google Inc. (GOOG) to establish reserved parking for pregnant women.
Why does the meme seem useful? Is it some subliminal effect? I see the connotations of slimming down and also being lazy (like when you're leanin' on the shovel/mop instead of working).
I suspect that media people are mostly just lamely grasping at ways to make the same old material seem new. I'm guilty of spreading the meme too, since I put this post up, but I have actually been avoiding "Lean In" stuff. I fell for it this time because of the Margaret Thatcher + Amity Shlaes prod.
ALSO IN THE COMMENTS: "I enjoy watching a woman 'lean in.'" And: "Lean In while wearing a low cut blouse, and you're sure to get a promotion." Is that the subliminal sustenance people are receiving?!