MIT Sloan | Mr. Refinery Engineer
GMAT 700- will retake, GPA 3.87
Yale | Ms. Social Impact AKS
GRE 315, GPA 7.56
Harvard | Mr. Political Consultant
GRE 337, GPA 3.85
Stanford GSB | Mr. Singing Banking Lawyer
GMAT 720, GPA 110-point scale. Got 110/110 with honors
Berkeley Haas | Ms. 10 Years Experience
GMAT To be taken, GPA 3.1
Said Business School | Mr. Across The Pond
GMAT 680, GPA 2.8
Yale | Mr. Army Infantry Officer
GMAT 730, GPA 2.83
Wharton | Mr. Army & Consulting
GMAT 760, GPA 4.0
Berkeley Haas | Mr. 360 Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
N U Singapore | Ms. Biomanager
GMAT 520, GPA 2.8
MIT Sloan | Mr. Low GPA Over Achiever
GMAT 700, GPA 2.5
Stanford GSB | Mr. Corp Finance
GMAT 740, GPA 3.75
Harvard | Mr. Improve Healthcare
GMAT 730, GPA 2.8
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Wake Up & Grind
GMAT 700, GPA 3.5
Darden | Mr. Fintech Nerd
GMAT 740, GPA 7.7/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. Minority Champ
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
Darden | Mr. Senior Energy Engineer
GMAT 710, GPA 2.5
Harvard | Mr. Merchant Of Debt
GMAT 760, GPA 3.5 / 4.0 in Master 1 / 4.0 in Master 2
Stanford GSB | Mr. Indian Telecom ENG
GRE 340, GPA 3.56
Stanford GSB | Ms. East Africa Specialist
GMAT 690, GPA 3.34
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Hanging By A Thread
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Mr. Nonprofit Social Entrepreneur
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
Chicago Booth | Ms. Start-Up Entrepreneur
GRE 318 current; 324 intended, GPA 3.4
Duke Fuqua | Ms. Health Care Executive
GMAT 690, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Mr. Professional Boy Scout
GMAT 660, GPA 3.83
IU Kelley | Mr. Construction Manager
GRE 680, GPA 3.02
IU Kelley | Mr. Clinical Trial Ops
GMAT Waived, GPA 3.33

Sheryl Sandberg On Leadership: “It Is Better To Inspire Than Direct”

FEEDBACK IS A GIFT

“Second, feedback is a gift. When I started at Facebook, I knew that my job success would entirely depend upon my relationship with Mark. So before I accepted the job, I asked him for a commitment, that we would sit down every Friday and he would give me feedback so that any issues he had would be aired very quickly and discussed. He not only said yes right away, he said, ‘Let’s make it reciprocal. I’ll give you feedback, and you give me feedback.’ For years, every Friday afternoon we sat down and told each other what we thought we could have done better. As the years went by, sharing honest reactions became part of our relationship. Now we do it in real time. We don’t have to wait for Friday afternoons.

“Getting feedback from your boss is one thing. But it is just as important to get feedback from the people who work for you. It’s not easy to do because employees are often eager to please those above them and no one wants to question or criticize their higher ups. One of my favorite examples comes from Wall Street. In 1990, Rob Rubin became CEO of Goldman Sachs. At the end of his first week on the job, he looked at the books and they had a lot of gold. He said why do we own so much gold. And someone said, ‘Well that was you, sir. He said, ‘Me?’ Apparently, the day before he was walking around the trading floor and said to someone, ‘Gold looks interesting.’ That got translated as Rubin likes gold, and someone spent hundreds of millions of dollars to please the new boss.

NOTHING IS SOMEONE ELSE’S PROBLEM

“Third, nothing is someone else’s problem. When I was in business school, I took a class that said he more senior you got, the more dependent you were on other people. I thought my professors were wrong. They were right. I am dependent on my sales team, not the other way around. As a leader, my performance is not just want I can do. But it’s what my whole team at Facebook does.

“Companies in every country have to operate in ways that are right for their cultures, but I think there are some leadership principles which are universal. And the most important: It is better to inspire than direct. Yes, people will do what their bosses say in most organizations, but great leaders don’t just want compliance. We want to elicit genuine enthusiasm, complete trust and real dedication. They just don’t win the minds of their teams. They win their hearts. If the people who work for you one day believe in you and believe in your mission, they will not just do their daily tasks well but they will do it with true passion.

“No one won more hearts than my beloved husband Dave who passed away suddenly two months ago. Dave was a really inspiring leader. He was kind and generous and thoughtful. He raised the performance of everyone around him. He did it as the CEO of SurveyMonkey, a great company he helped build. And he did it for me and our children.

“Harvard Business School Professor Francis Frei has said that leadership is making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts until your absence. Like Dave, You can do this not just for yourself but for other people.

LEAN IN

“Fourth, lean in. The Chinese proverb holds that women hold up half the sky. Women have a special role and it was wonderful to see that half of your speakers today were women.”

DON’T MISS: SHERYL SANDBERG’S INSPIRING CLASS DAY SPEECH AT HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL

About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.