By Alison van Diggelen, host of Fresh Dialogues

If you think you’ve read everything about Sheryl Sandberg and her book “Lean In” think again. Last night, Sandberg joined her ex-boss, Google’s Eric Schmidt in conversation at Silicon Valley’s Computer History Museum.  As the guy who recruited Sandberg to Google back in 2001, Schmidt used his intimate knowledge to give us something new: an insider’s view of this remarkable woman. He describes her as “One of the great leaders of our industry who has built two multimillion dollar businesses already and has a lot ahead of her.”

Sitting with “Lean In” on his lap, Schmidt casually thumbed through her book, quoting excerpts, asking astute questions and making pithy remarks about topics such as gender bias, finding “the perfect” partner and even shared some of his business philosophy. To close, he asked her to read a short passage and the audience appeared to hold its collective breath. Check out the video.

Here are some highlights:

On leaning in while Parenting 

“Wake up Silicon Valley. Put more girls into computer camp!” Sheryl Sandberg

Sandberg was appalled to discover that only 5 of the 35 kids enrolled in a Stanford computer science camp last year were girls.

On Gender Bias

“I’ve written the book on it and it’s still happening to me!” Sheryl Sandberg

On Pay Negotiations

“Women still pay a penalty for negotiating for themselves.” Sheryl Sandberg

She was delighted to hear from women who’re now saying to their bosses: “Sheryl Sandberg wants me to ask you for a raise.”

John Hollar makes humorous introductions  at the Sandberg/Schmidt event. Photo: Fresh Dialogues

John Hollar makes humorous introductions at the Sandberg/Schmidt event. Photo: Fresh Dialogues

Best Advice from Eric Schmidt

“Don’t be an idiot. Google is a rocket ship and when you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat.” Sheryl Sandberg

On Choosing a Partner

“Marry someone who wants equality…(including) night feedings, and changing 50% of diapers.” Sheryl Sandberg

On Motherhood

“Work efficiency grows when you become a mother.” Sheryl Sandberg

On Stay At Home Mothers (SAHMs) and the Mommy wars

“I can feel guilty or grateful….(choose) to be more generous with each other. ” Sheryl Sandberg

On Re-entering the workforce (after time off being a SAHM)

“Ask where are my skills needed. Experience is less relevant. Be flexible, adapt.” Sheryl Sandberg

On Mandating Quotas for Company Boards

“I’m not arguing for it…it hasn’t moved other numbers in places like Norway (like the number of female VPs, other leadership roles).” Sheryl Sandberg

On Stupidest Criticism of her book

“I’m blaming women…I’m not!” Sheryl Sandberg

On Best Criticism

“I’m embracing stereotypes…I don’t want to, but that is what’s required till we get many more women leaders.” Sheryl Sandberg

On what happens next

“We’ve set up a community at and people are starting circles, even fathers and daughters are starting circles. We’re unleashing a movement.” Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg urges all women to Lean In. Photo: Fresh Dialogues

Sheryl Sandberg urges all women to Lean In. Photo: Fresh Dialogues

On political aspirations

“I’m rooting for Hillary in 2016. I’m happy at Facebook and helping women get into office.” Sheryl Sandberg

Eric Schmidt also had some memorable remarks

On Finding the Right Partner

“Dave (Sandberg’s husband Dave Goldberg) is indeed perfect.” Eric Schmidt

On the work-life juggle, guilt trips

“Redefine your situation as success.” Eric Schmidt

On Feminism

Feminism 2.0 means understanding stereotypes and becoming empowered.” Eric Schmidt

On Succeeding in Business 

“Revenue solves all known problems. Concentrate on cashflow.” Eric Schmidt



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