If there’s one woman in particular who’s making her impact felt around Silicon Valley, it’s Sheryl Sandberg. Although there seems to be some unremarked upon gender conflict around her, no one is doubting that she is, in fact, the number two honcho at Facebook, the world’s biggest social network. Moreover, she’s widely pinned as the person directly deserving of a lot of the credit for putting Facebook’s always latent potential for profitability on the excellent track it’s been in for the past three years, or since Sandberg’s arrival.
In 2008 she jumped ship as Google’s vice-president of global online sales and operations to join the celebrated social network. As the story goes, right before leaving Google, Sandberg petitioned for a post with more leadership and responsibility: her request was summarily denied. Not retaining an employee with such clear leadership potential was probably one of the things that former Google CEO Eric Schmidt was thinking of when he mentioned in an interview with All Things D that he had “screwed up” some things during his tenure.
Today, Sandberg may not be on Facebook’s board of directors — both she and Mark Zuckerberg claim that matter is a non-issue — but she is being mentioned as a possible future presidential candidate.