What's in a word? More than you might think. Sheryl Sandberg is so bothered by one word in particular that she wants to ban it altogether - especially when it comes to how that word is used to describe little girls.
The word is 'bossy,' and Sheryl Sandberg has recently launched the 'Ban Bossy,' campaign to encourage parents and kids to think more carefully about the how that word is used when it comes to young women.
In her recent editorial for the Wall Street Journal, Sandberg goes so far as to call it 'the other b-word.' And she's right. The word 'bossy' has a negative connotation that penalizes girls who stick up for themselves, share their ideas, or voice their opinions.
From the Ban Bossy website:
When a little boy asserts himself, he's called a “leader.” Yet when a little girl does the same, she risks being branded “bossy.” Words like bossy send a message: don't raise your hand or speak up. By middle school, girls are less interested in leading than boys—a trend that continues into adulthood. Together we can encourage girls to lead.
As part of her campaign, Sandberg launched the Ban Bossy website which has loads of tips for helping little girls speak up. Here's a PSA from the site - it's a regular who's who of strong women - all sharing the same message. That it is time to #BanBossy and give girls a voice.
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