Leadership is not a skill set; it’s a way of living. It starts with understanding that we all have the power to dare greatly and lead purposefully. Whether you’re new to leadership or an experienced leader, Dare to Lead by Brene Brown is an excellent read for those looking to improve their skill set in this area. This book is about taking responsibility and understanding how to foster the potential in people- whether they are your direct reports or a team member in another department.
By facilitating the right conversations, you can learn to stop avoiding the hard conversations and address the underlying issues. By using empathy, connection, and courage, you can learn to embrace the human side of feelings and experiences while bringing meaning into your skillset, as well as your ability.
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What I loved about Dare to Lead
I loved how Brene Brown wrote her book in a format that takes a common-sense approach to leadership by emphasizing the idea of authenticity and vulnerability. It’s not about pretending like you have everything figured out all the time, but rather acknowledging your own humanness to make better decisions and lead people who are just as full of flaws as yourself.
The next thing that made me enjoy reading this book was the authentic stories told. Brown shares her own personal experience with vulnerability and how leaders need to open up and share. The stories of Brown’s experiences provide a humanizing element that also brings authenticity into the book.
The third thing I loved is how to concepts of Dare to Lead are broken down. There are 4 factors at play here.
- Rumbling with Vulnerability
- Living into your Values
- Braving Trust
- Learning to Rise
To see how you rate in each area, take the daring leadership assessment.
The book is written for an audience new to leadership or with some experience; I would have loved it if Brown had included additional information on how to connect at a more meaningful level with those in more senior positions. I think she was well-intentioned as several times she referred to other books she has written but a new reader to her work would have a hard time connecting the dots.
I would have loved to see her use a different work than rumbling. She defines what the term means but when I think of rumbling, I think about going to war with someone. A couple of times as she repeated the word I felt like I needed to gear up and find some weapons.
Recommendation on the Book
Overall, Dare to Lead was a good book. I would recommend that everyone read it, as many who are in leadership roles don’t even realize it.
Many leaders are stuck in their ways, and they refuse to learn how to embrace feelings and emotions when it comes to leading others. With this type of thinking, people will never be able-bodied or fully capable of reaching their potential. This book helps you cut through that stigma and embrace the skills required to really lead others.