"We don't have the right family leave, so I never thought 'lean in' worked all the time," the Facebook COO said

By Gabrielle Chung
December 10, 2020 08:57 PM
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Sheryl Sandberg
| Credit: Tamron Hall Show

Sheryl Sandberg is advocating for better family leave.

The Facebook chief operating officer and Lean In author, 51, opens up about the importance of providing a support structure for workers during her appearance on The Tamron Hall Show on Friday, explaining that women "can't lean in all the time" in a system that hinders their potential.

"You can't lean in when ... you work a full-time job and your husband works a full-time job, but you come home and do all the housework," she says. "And you can't lean in when there's not the right corporate policies, where we don't give maternity leave to everyone."

"We don't have the right family leave, so I never thought 'lean in' worked all the time," she continues.

Earlier this year, Sandberg urged men to pitch in at home as many companies pivoted to remote work due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Sharing a New York Times article titled " 'I Feel Like I Have Five Jobs': Moms Navigate the Pandemic," Sandberg wrote on her Instagram in a Mar. 26 post: "Now more than ever, men need to step up at home."

"Research conducted before the crisis showed that when men do their fair share of chores, partners are happier and less depressed and suffer fewer conflicts," she wrote in the caption. "Kids benefit too, and they get to see what gender equality looks like up-close. At a time when many of us are staying home — as our incredible healthcare workers and others fight tirelessly on the frontlines of this crisis — every step towards progress counts."

Sheryl Sandberg
| Credit: Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty

Sandberg also explained that women "make up the majority of the healthcare workforce. And regardless of industry or whether they work outside the home, women still do most of the housework in heterosexual partnerships."

"This burden only increases with the added pressures of homeschooling, working from home, and keeping loved ones healthy," the mother of two added.

In October, Sandberg spoke about the toll of the pandemic on working women during a virtual event for #StraightTalk, an interview series organized by the employee resource group Women @ Meredith. (Meredith is PEOPLE’s parent corporation.)

"Women are getting crushed by the workload at work and the workload at home," Sandberg noted. "This is a crisis, and we need to pick our heads up and see it before it erodes all the gains we’ve made over the past decade."