So for any of us in this room today, let's start out by admitting we're lucky. We don't live in the world our mothers lived in, our grandmothers lived in, where career choices for women were so limited. And if you're in this room today, most of us grew up in a world where we had basic civil rights, and amazingly, we still live in a world where some women don't have them. But all that aside, we still have a problem, and it's a real problem. And the problem is this: Women are not making it to the top of any profession anywhere in the world. The numbers tell the story quite clearly. 190 heads of state -- nine are women. Of all the people in parliament in the world, 13 percent are women. In the corporate sector, women at the top, C-level jobs, board seats -- tops out at 15, 16 percent. The numbers have not moved since 2002 and are going in the wrong direction. And even in the non-profit world, a world we sometimes think of as being led by more women, women at the top: 20 percent.
Anyone else out there a TED geek? I found this talk from Sheryl Sandberg incredibly motivating. I already knew to "sit at the table" but "don't leave before you leave" was a really insightful point that I hadn't heard verbalized for many young women in the workforce. Give it a listen.