WASHINGTON – Lajla Brandt Jakhelln has the life many women want, but struggle to have, in the United States. She’s the deputy chief of mission at the Norwegian embassy and the mother of three, a good example of policies in place in Norway that allow both women and men to maintain leadership roles and cultivate a family. Those policies include subsidized day care, maternity and paternity leave and the ability to work part time until the youngest child turns 12. “It is indeed possible to combine empowerment, care and work,” Jakhelln said. “Each country has to find its own path.”
The U.S. encourages women to strive for leadership positions individually, a method called “leaning in” after a book written by Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer.