Was it just a matter of good genes or is it another reason this mom raised three daughters, one more successful than the other? Esther Wojcicki is proud of her children, but she did not stay there. He wrote a book, a terrifying bestseller, about how to raise successful children.
She seems to know the secret, she is the mother of two CEOs Silicon Valley and a university professor. Something would do well, it can not.
Susan Wojcicki is the most famous in the news, since she is you see the CEO of YouTube. However, Anne Wojcicki, co-founder and general manager of the biotechnology company 23andMe, is also well known.
As for the third sister, Janet Wojcicki, she is a distinguished professor at the University of California, with extensive academic and research work.
The three children managed to emerge as very competitive and demanding industries and they did it because they followed their inclination unhindered.
“Watching my daughters move around the world with courage and integrity has been one of the greatest rewards of my life,” says Esther Wojcicki, who also knows success well. They do not unjustly call her “godmother of Silicon Valley”!
Esther began educating her children long before they began bombarding Stanford academics with questions about particle physics. The father you see, Stanley Wojcicki, is a physics teacher at Stanford and the little ones grew up next to his distinguished colleagues.
Esther did not leave it to chance though. Having worked as a teacher and kindergarten teacher in the 1960s, he began to suspect that preschool education was perhaps far more critical than humanity had previously believed.
“My theory is that the most important years are between 0-5,” he says characteristically, “it was more instinct. And so I made it all a game. “
Mom spent endless hours with her daughters, doing crafts and painting and he took them to the library every week, teaching them how to read, count, and swim before they even set foot in the classroom.
Developmentalists and experts in human evolution have, of course, proved that Esther was right. The first years of a child’s life remain one of the most important periods in terms of learning and brain development.
But to see who the mom is, who the daughters are and how it all happened…
The famous mom
Her Palo Alto California obviously does not need recommendations, it is the very heart of Silicon Valley. And Palo Alto’s most distinguished educator is none other than Esther Wojcicki.
For 36 consecutive years, the Palo Alto High School teacher has built a world-renowned arts program for school environments, through which many Silicon Valley nurseries have passed. Among them is the daughter of Steve Jobs.
The Palo Alto High School Media Arts Program currently counts 600 excellent children, 6 distinguished teachers, 9 magazines and much more.
Wojcicki has won many awards for her revolutionary educational work and has spoken extensively about her school vision, even in G20 Summit.
He has studied pedagogy and political science at leading American universities, has a master’s degree in journalism and educational technologies, is behind magazines, educational content websites, and is a member of more boards than one could list.
The daughter of Russian Jewish immigrants in the New World, she was the only one of the three children in her family who was able to study. And he studied a lot for a number of years. And then he put into practice what he had learned, without ever stopping to learn.
The task of her life, however, as she says, was to raise her children with the new educational habits that she preached. “I wanted my children to be as independent and informed as possible.”
She writes this somewhere in her epic bestseller specs «How to Raise Successful People» (How to Raise Successful Children), a book that came out in 2019 and was warmly received by the public and experts.
There she analyzes the philosophy that followed in the upbringing of her 3 successful children…
The even more famous daughters
Esther is the mother of Susan, his CEO YouTube, Janet, an award-winning anthropologist and professor of pediatrics at the university, and Anne, CEO of 23andMe.
What she did with her three daughters, Esther now does to her 10 grandchildren, raising the new generation of Wojcicki.
Most famous, but not necessarily the most successful, of the three is Susan Wojcicki (born 1968), the iron lady of YouTube and a senior in the tech industry for two decades.
Wojcicki was actively involved in its creation Google, having the famous garage used by the two little ones as the headquarters of the company. She was the first head of marketing in 1999. Then she started online advertising and then Google’s first video platform.
When he saw the success of YouTube, he suggested in 2006 to the two little ones that co-founders buy it. It has been its general manager since 2014, reaching 2 billion monthly users and a value of $ 90 billion. Forbes estimates her fortune at $ 580 million.
Time magazine described her as “the most important man in advertising” in 2015 and later as “the most powerful woman on the internet”. He got married in 1998 and had 5 children.
Anne Wojcicki (born 1973) is a businesswoman. She co-founded the foundation in 2006 and serves as general manager of 23andMe, with Forbes including her in the 2020 list of the 100 most powerful women in the world.
She studied biology at Yale, has done molecular biology research and has worked as a health consultant in her major investments Wall Street and biotechnology companies. Her own company is pioneering DNA testing at home (“Invention of the Year” in 2008, according to Time) and has been funded by Google and GlaxoSmithKline for $ 300 million.
Her revolutionary work has reached 23andMe with a market capitalization of $ 2.5 billion. In her personal life, she was married to Google co-founder Sergey Brin between 2007-2013, having two children together.
Despite the divorce, they continue to co-operate with The Brin Wojcicki Foundation.
The third daughter, Janet Wojcicki, is pursuing an academic career. She is an assistant professor pediatrics at the University of California, with brilliant studies and significant research work in the fields of anthropology and epidemiology.
Her revolutionary work on childhood obesity and AIDS is internationally renowned. As is its ongoing work on the vulnerable populations of sub-Saharan Africa.
How to raise successful children
“It’s important to resist the urge to give your child what you lack,” Esther told the 2019 Forbes Women’s Summit. “If you think about how creativity and innovation are acquired, it’s when you don’t have everything.”
In her book she gives us the pentagram of her own parenting model, the one she applied literally to her children to help them triumph later in life: “Trust, respect, independence, cooperation and kindness.”
Experts, he tells us, focus on the most important aspects of a child’s life, such as sleep, food, emotional attachment and discipline. Forgetting everything else that is just as important to her.
“What we need to know most is how to give our children the values and skills to succeed as adults,” she argues. “As a young mother, I followed every little advice and guidance I could find, but for the most part I decided to trust myself”.
She reveals that she talked to her daughters as if they were adults from day one. “Most mothers return to normal baby talk, a louder voice, simpler words. Not me. “I trusted them and they trusted me.”
She also confesses that while she never put her children in danger, she did not prevent them from living their experiences and taking their own risks.
“When we lived in Geneva, I sent Susan and Janet to the next store to buy bread, alone, they were 5 and 4 years old. “I respected their individuality from the beginning.”
Her basic principle in raising children was that the most important age for everything is 0-5 years. “And so I would learn as much as I could from the beginning.”
And that is exactly what he did. She took her daughters to the gardening classes she did, not necessarily to love plants, but to learn their names.
“It was fun for me to teach them how to swim from a young age, to read from a young age, to ride a bike, to know things about the neighborhood. You can teach a lot to children from a very young age “.
The second pillar of her method was to give her daughters an unusual degree of freedom and initiative, so that they could learn to think and act independently.
When they started reading, he would take them to the lending library every week holding a large basket so that they could fill it with books. But he did not tell them what books to take, let them choose for themselves.
With that and that, he raised three kids who have done well in their lives. “Of course, I do not claim all the praise for their success as adults, but all three proved to be successful, loved and capable people.”
The three daughters seem to recognize and positively appreciate her contribution to their lives. When they are all together for breakfast at their paternal home, where their parents have lived for 50 years, they joke about how Esther never had any appreciation for “good behavior”.
“My theory has always been: the more you do for your children, the less they do for themselves,” she says.
One of the most important lessons she taught her children was this: “They all try to do their best, but they forgive themselves. A perfectionist never forgives himself if he does something that is not perfect. They do. “They do not feel guilty about their failures.”
So was she. She did not trust anything or anyone when it came to raising her children. But also the educational act. Take her path and convince others along the way that only if you turn within yourself, you will chart your own path as parent.
“Do you want your child to want to be with you, not to need to be with you”, this is the essence of her wisdom…