The appointment of Sandberg to Facebook’s board is historic in its own right, marking the first time Facebook’s male-only governing has welcomed a woman to the table.
As one would probably expect from a global company worth billions, there are a lot of moving parts and subtext associated with Sandberg’s appointment. For one, will her new role impact investors and analysts, many of whom have been critical of Facebook’s underperforming stock prices since the company went public in May?
The timing is interesting as well. Facebook made the announcement on the same day that the Committee for Economic Development produced a report on the lack of women directors at American companies. According to the report, women held just 16 percent of Fortune 500 board seats last year.
Is it possible Facebook was feeling the heat for its “boys club” atmosphere at the top of the company? It’s worth noting that Sandberg is an insider, which leads to the possible notion that if Facebook was pressured into bringing a woman to its board, it certainly was going to do so while keeping the “club” as private as possible. Not exactly synonymous with the term “publicly traded company.”
We’re not hearing much from Sandberg herself, which strikes us as odd considering how vocal she has been about empowering women in business. She released a simple statement on her appointment: "I feel fortunate to be part of a company that is having such a profound impact in the world.”
We’d call that a tepid statement. Ultimately, however, Sandberg has made history by joining Facebook’s seven-person board and that may be as valuable as all her stock options and estimates of net-worth.
J-Connection: Sheryl Sandberg and Mark Zuckerberg are both Jewish.