Sheryl Sandberg’s Timeline: Past, Present – And Future

She’s a blazing star in every sense of the word. At 43, Sheryl Sandberg’s life story reads like a bestselling novel. Now that Sheryl joined the billionaires’ club when Facebook went public earlier this year, what will her future bring?

Timeline, Facebook’s life story feature, received a lot of attention when it debuted in 2012, but it only covers the past and present. Does Sheryl’s own timeline include a future element? If so, how does she plan to invest her time, energy, and passion among the big buckets of work, family, friends, education, and service?

If Sheryl mapped out her work and service lives, from when she graduated from college in 1991 to her future senior years, it might have looked like this:

Life Title: WOMEN LEAD THE WAY

First Twenty Years – Ages 1-20 (1969-1988) – Laying the Groundwork

Grew up in Florida, always at the top of class. Attended Harvard College, majoring in Economics. Met professor Larry Summers, who became mentor and thesis advisor. Graduated from Harvard in 1991 and awarded Phi Beta Kappa.

Second Twenty Years – Ages 21-40 (1989-2008) – Building Public and Private Sector Foundation

Public Sector – Work at World Bank from 1991 to 1993, concentrating on health projects in emerging countries. Work as Chief of Staff to U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Larry Summers in Clinton Administration in Washington D.C. from 1996 to 2001.

Private Sector – Graduate from Harvard Business School in 1995 at age 27 as a Baker Scholar, the highest distinction. Work at McKinsey for one year as a management consultant. Leave private sector to work in White House for several years. Return to private sector in 2001 to join Google in Silicon Valley as Vice President of Online Sales and help start Google’s philanthropic arm, Google.org. Hired by Mark Zuckerberg to become chief operating officer at social media giant Facebook in 2008. Mentored Mark. Became national spokesperson for women in business.

Third Twenty Years – Ages 41-60 (2009-2028) – Putting It All Together

Help take Facebook public in 2012. Become a billionaire on paper at age 42. Facebook stock tumbles after the IPO. (The facts so far – now for the future imagined… ) Orchestrate a successful online advertising strategy that leads to strong revenue growth and a stock recovery. Leave Facebook in 2014 to create Women in Politics think tank. Write a memoir/activist book about women in business at age 46. Run for U.S. Senate in seat for California vacated by Barbara Boxer in 2016 at age 48.

As U.S. Senator, champion landmark bill to integrate solar panels into rooftops for all new housing construction. Run for President in 2024 at age 56. Become the first woman President of the United States. Pass Equal Pay Act to remove final institutional barriers to equal pay for equal work. Put Elizabeth Warren on the Supreme Court.

Fourth Twenty Years – Ages 61-80 (2029-2048) – Redefining the Post-Presidency

Second term as President of United States from 2029-2033. Pass Education Act to revamp K-12 public education to global leadership standards. After the presidency, start a foundation for encouraging women to campaign for peace in the Middle East. Travel the world to encourage and support women running for political office.

Fifth Twenty Years – Ages 81-100 (2049-2068) – Life Re-Imagined

Become an American Association of Retired Persons advocate for aging well through lifelong learning. Focus on use of virtual classroom training to foster global learning communities.

Graphic of Sheryl Sandberg’s Timeline

For some people, it’s easy to predict what their future will bring based on looking at their past and present. For others, it’s not so clear. One thing’s for sure; people who are able to imagine and articulate a positive future for themselves are far more likely to make it happen. What’s on Sheryl’s private life map? She hasn’t told us, but we bet that if she does put the U.S. Presidency on her life map, she just might get there.

Do’s and Don’ts for Great Presentations

Preparing for a presentation can be stressful. You have to choose a topic, consider who will be in your audience and you have to create the content of presentation/speech. While all of these are important, it is crucial to know what to do and what not to do on stage. If you have a stellar presentation prepared but aren’t using open body language or lack professionalism, your presentation will not have as much power as it could.

Prior to a presentation ensure that you establish communication with the individual that is hiring you. This should be done in person or over the phone, not by email. Ask questions to gain more information on the expectations and requirements of the presentation. Research the company and your topic to ensure your topic is relevant.

While planning your presentation consider your topic, make sure it is clear and that you can describe it in one sentence. Anything longer indicates you have too many topics for one presentation. Having too many topics can become confusing to the listener and your presentation may not seem organized. Follow the structure of a good speech. The Rule of 3 consists of an introduction, body and conclusion.

Do’s for a great presentation:

1. Be confident, smile and be YOU.
2. Know your topic and presentation inside and out. Cut out any unnecessary facts/information.
3. Practice and practice again. Record your presentation, review and make changes.
4. You “you” more than “I”, this will help the audience feel they are involved and will help them engage in the presentation.
5. Be prepared for possible “hecklers” or “saboteurs”, know what you are going to do if this happens.
6. Display professionalism with your attire and way of being.
7. Use key words that will connect with the audience, talk slow and pronounce your words. Effectively use pausing for effect and provide the audience with a moment to think about what you have just said.
8. Pay attention to your body language, it sends off messages that you may not want to send. Do not cross your arms or legs, face away from the audience or pace. Stand confidently, with open body language and be calm.

DON’TS for Great Presentations

1. Do not use abstract words such as things, instead say the thing is or use words that are more fitting and professional.
2. Do not start a sentence with “um, ah, so, now”, this makes your presentation seem unprepared and your audience will lose interest.
3. Do not end your sentences with “right, huh, eh” – the end of the sentence should be the strongest point. Pause when appropriate for effect and let the audience think about it.
4. Do not read off of your slides or handouts, these should only be used for supporting documentation.
5. Do not let someone in the audience distract you – answer their questions briefly and effectively and then move on to the next question or your presentation.
6. Do not overwhelm your audience with too much information or too many different points. LESS is always more.

The only way to being successful is being prepared. Knowing your presentation well, what you will do if a situation is to occurs on stage and being professional are the main tools to helping your presentation thrive. Taking into consideration the list of Do’s and Don’ts mentioned above will make your presentation that much stronger and meaningful.

How to Give an Excellent Presentation

Whether you are presenting to a small or large audience at work or in the community, here are 10 factors that can help you give an excellent presentation:

1. You know your subject.
It’s obvious to me and the rest of the audience that you know your material well and can handle questions with ease. You are confident but not cocky. It’s okay if you use notes, but you are not buried in them.

2. You communicate a clear message.
Not only do you know your subject well, but you are able to focus it into a concise message that I can understand, regardless of my level of expertise.

3. Your message is relevant to me (also known as “you care about the audience”).
You explain how your message relates to me and my experience. Once I heard someone give a speech that consisted entirely of stories about his experiences with famous people, to which I couldn’t relate at all. I kept thinking, “how does this help ME?”

4. You are prepared.
You show your respect for me and the rest of the audience by moving through your points in an organized manner, speaking within the time limit and comfortably handling the room environment and logistics.

5. You keep my attention.
You vary your voice and body language so you are interesting to listen to and watch. You make eye contact with me, you speak loudly enough so I can hear you easily and your body language matches your words.

6. You care about your subject.
Your presentation or speech conveys your sincere enthusiasm for your subject. You don’t have to be jumping up and down in the front of the room, but if you don’t care about your subject, why should I?

7. You share stories and examples.
Your stories don’t have to be long or overly dramatic; they can be short examples or anecdotes that illustrate your message and help it make sense to me.

8. Your slides are not the focus.
You remember that you are the presentation and your slides are just the visual aids. You spend most of your time making eye contact with the audience instead of looking at the screen. Your slides are easy to read and contain high-quality images. (Or, you don’t use slides at all!)

9. You are authentic.
You are your real self instead of putting on an act or pretending. You connect with me and the rest of the audience by sharing your real experiences and opinions. And you’re the same person offstage as when you’re onstage.

10. You’re not perfect.
When something unexpected happens or you make a mistake, you acknowledge it with grace and humor. And we are reminded that the goal is communication, not perfection, since perfection is unrealistic and unnecessary.

The next time you have to give a presentation or speech for any kind of audience, make sure you include these 10 factors, so you can deliver an excellent presentation.