The LEAN IN idea was originally developed for women in corporate America, where gender plays a bigger role than in the field of science. However, the platform became very successful over the last couple of years, and now is used by females in any area. For example, currently there are 30,000 LEAN IN circles in the world located in 154 countries.

Based on the LEAN IN platform specifically developed to promote gender equality at leadership positions, there are 2 peer-support groups since March 2017. Among the participants they have PhD students, postdocs, assistant professors, master students and staff scientists. They divided people between the groups so that they have similar number of participants at different levels of their career, from different labs and also people with families and not within each group. They hope this will promote the transfer of experience in both work and life issues. 

What it entails

The LEAN IN curriculum runs over a 10-month period and includes 1 meeting of the circle per month. During the remaining meetings, they will work through the following topics: 

  • Power of female peer support -Why is peer support important? How to support your peers? Peer support in action
  • Centered leadership -how to build trust and form relationships, how to understand and accept your fears, importance of taking risks
  • Effective communication - body language of authority and approachability and how to use both styles
  • Work and family -letting go of perfection, prioritising goals, strategies to improve the work/home balance, strategies for effective energy renewal and recovery, how to achieve 50/50 partnership?