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Wednesday 17 September 2014

Facebook connects with SMEs at Dublin launch

Ailish O'Hora and Louise Kelly

Published 17/04/2014 | 02:30

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Social media giant Facebook is set to double the number of sales and marketing staff at its Dublin operations servicing the SME sector as part of an overall expansion this year.

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The company plans to raise total Irish staff numbers to 1,000 when it moves to new, bigger offices at Grand Canal Square in July.

And by the end of this year, more than 60 of these staff will be working with the SME sector, up from the current 30.

Facebook chief operations officer Sheryl Sandberg told an audience of Irish business owners yesterday that they made up a "huge percentage of jobs growth" and are contributing to the economic recovery.

She was in Dublin to launch Facebook's European 'SME client council' – a platform to connect SMEs with Facebook executives to improve the company's offering to small business.

Ms Sandberg joined Facebook from Google and was recently named one of the world's most influential women by 'Time' magazine. She is the only woman on the board of Facebook and is now worth more than $900m (€650m) following a recent drop in Facebook's stock value.

EQUAL

Earlier in the day, she held court at a 'Lean In' event at the Facebook headquarters to discuss her book, 'Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead'.

"The book doesn't say you should work all night or that women should be like men. What it promotes is equal opportunity for women so they can do whatever they choose to do," she said.

"Gender quotas can be useful. They may be right for Ireland, they may not be. But even with the quota, we have to attack stereotypes."

Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and COO of Facebook speaking in Dublin this morning on ways women are held back through gender biases and how women and men can work together to create a more equal work place. 
Pic:Mark Condren
16.4.2014
Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and COO of Facebook speaking in Dublin this morning on ways women are held back through gender biases and how women and men can work together to create a more equal work place. Photo: Mark Condren
Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and COO of Facebook speaking in Dublin this morning on ways women are held back through gender biases and how women and men can work together to create a more equal work place.
Pic:Mark Condren
16.4.2014
Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and COO of Facebook speaking in Dublin this morning on ways women are held back through gender biases and how women and men can work together to create a more equal work place. Pic:Mark Condren 16.4.2014
Sheryl Sandberg

The mother of two maintains that 'being picky' about choosing the 'right partner' is crucial to ongoing career success for women in business.

"I think it's funny when fathers say that they are 'babysitting' their own children. Parenting – for either parent – is not a hobby."

Ms Sandberg also rubbished rumours doing the round in America that she will run for office in the US. "I think it is really important to have female leaders in business as well as politics," she said.

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