Brené Brown – Leadership Courage

Brené Brown

Brené Brown – Leadership Courage – Contents

  • Brené Brown Biography
  • Brené Brown – Big Idea:
    • Leadership Courage
  • Interesting Facts and Insights about Brené Brown
  • Career Advice Quotes by Brené Brown
  • Business Advice Quotes by Brené Brown
  • Leadership and Management Advice Quotes by Brené Brown
  • Brené Brown Inspirational Quotes
  • Books by Brené Brown
  • Questions about Brené Brown
  • Brené Brown – Videos

Brené Brown Biography

Casandra Brené Brown (born 1965) is a research professor at the University of Houston. She has spent her career studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. Brown’s TED talk, titled “The Power of Vulnerability,” is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world with over 35 million views.

Brené Brown is the author of five number 1 New York Times bestsellers. Her book “Dare to Lead” is the culmination of a seven-year study on courage and leadership. Brown was also the first person to have a filmed talk available on Netflix, titled “The Call to Courage.”


Brené Brown – Big Idea: Leadership Courage

“Dare to Lead” is the culmination of a seven-year study on courage and leadership by Brené Brown. Brené Brown’s “Big Idea” is the need to build courage in the workspace to enable creativity and innovation. Leaders and teams face problems showing up vulnerable at work, thus sabotaging themselves and blocking innovation and creativity.

Leadership Courage is about leadership’s ability to choose courage over comfort. To choose whole hearts over armor, and building an organizational culture based on bravery and vulnerability. According to Brené Brown, a leader is:

“Anyone who takes responsibility for finding the potential in people and processes, and who has the courage to develop that potential.”

Brené Brown’s Big Idea is that Leadership Courage is a collection of skill sets that can be taught, observed, and measured. The skills include:

  • Rumbling with Vulnerability: Vulnerability is the emotion we experience during times of uncertainty, failure, risk, and emotional exposure.
  • Living into our Values: Our values & beliefs lead us to be daring.
  • Braving Trust: Integrity is choosing courage over comfort.
  • Learning to Rise: Own the story, and you get to write the ending.

Interesting Facts and Insights about Brené Brown

  • Born: Casandra Brené Brown was born in 1965 in San Antonio, Texas, United States.
  • Degree: Brené Brown completed her Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) at the University of Texas at Austin in 1995.
  • Masters: Brené Brown graduated with a Master of Social Work (MSW) in 1996.
  • Ph.D.: Brené Brown received a Ph.D. from the Graduate College of Social Work at the University of Houston in 2002.
  • Career Start: Brown began her career as a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work.
  • Research: Brown research focuses on authentic leadership and wholeheartedness in families, schools, and organizations.
  • Influential: Houston Woman Magazine voted Brown one of Houston’s most influential women of 2009.
  • TED: Brown presented a 2012 TED talk and two 2010 TEDx talks. Brown’s TED talk “The Power of Vulnerability” is one of the top five most viewed TED talks, with over 40 million views.
  • Author: Brown is the author of five #1 New York Times bestsellers.
  • CEO: Brown is the chief executive officer for “The Daring Way,” a training program for professionals who want to facilitate her work on vulnerability, courage, shame, and empathy.
  • Home: Brown lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband, Steve Alley, and their two children
  • Endowed Chair: The Huffington Foundation honored Brown, in 2016, by pledging $2 million over four years to fund the Brené Brown Endowed Chair in the Graduate College of Social Work at the University of Houston.

Career Advice Quotes by Brené Brown

“Let go of who you think you’re supposed to be; embrace who you are.”

“We don’t have to do all of it alone. We were never meant to.”

“Want to be happy? Stop trying to be perfect.”

“Shame is the most powerful, master emotion. It’s the fear that we’re not good enough.”

“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”

“Staying vulnerable is a risk we have to take if we want to experience connection.”

“What’s the greater risk? Letting go of what people think – or letting go of how I feel, what I believe, and who I am?”

“Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome.”

“Because true belonging only happens when we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.”

“If you trade your authenticity for safety, you may experience the following: anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief.”


Business Advice Quotes by Brené Brown

“There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period.”

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.”

“Sometimes the bravest and most important thing you can do is just show up.”

“A lot of cheap seats in the arena are filled with people who never venture onto the floor. They just hurl mean-spirited criticisms and put-downs from a safe distance.”

“For me, if you’re not in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.”

“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”

“Understanding the difference between healthy striving and perfectionism is critical to laying down the shield and picking up your life. Research shows that perfectionism hampers success. In fact, it’s often the path to depression, anxiety, addiction, and life paralysis.”


Leadership and Management Advice Quotes by Brené Brown

“What separates privilege from entitlement is gratitude.”

“You cannot shame or belittle people into changing their behaviors.”

“Imperfections are not inadequacies; they are reminders that we’re all in this together.”

“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it.”

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”

“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.”

“When we fail to set boundaries and hold people accountable, we feel used and mistreated. This is why we sometimes attack who they are, which is far more hurtful than addressing a behavior or a choice.”

“When I look at narcissism through the vulnerability lens, I see the shame-based fear of being ordinary. I see the fear of never feeling extraordinary enough to be noticed, to be lovable, to belong, or to cultivate a sense of purpose.”

“Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”

“Vulnerability is not knowing victory or defeat, it’s understanding the necessity of both; it’s engaging. It’s being all in.”

“Perfectionism is a self-destructive and addictive belief system that fuels this primary thought: If I look perfect, and do everything perfectly, I can avoid or minimize the painful feelings of shame, judgment, and blame.”

“I want to be in the arena. I want to be brave with my life. And when we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time.”

“The problem is, when we stop caring what people think and stop feeling hurt by cruelty, we lose our ability to connect. But when we’re defined by what people think, we lose the courage to be vulnerable. Therefore, we need to be selective about the feedback we let into our lives.”


“Don’t try to win over the haters; you are not a jackass whisperer.”

– Brené Brown

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To love ourselves and support each other in the process of becoming real is perhaps the greatest single act of daring greatly.”

– Brené Brown

Brené Brown Inspirational Quotes

“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.”

“What we know matters but who we are matters more.”

“You are imperfect, you are wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.”

“Social media has given us this idea that we should all have a posse of friends when in reality, if we have one or two really good friends, we are lucky.”

“You either walk inside your story and own it or you stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness.”

“If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.”

“Healthy striving is self-focused: “How can I improve?” Perfectionism is other-focused: “What will they think?”

“I’ve found what makes children happy doesn’t always prepare them to be courageous, engaged adults.”

“What we don’t need in the midst of struggle is shame for being human.”

“The dark does not destroy the light; it defines it. It’s our fear of the dark that casts our joy into the shadows.”

“We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.”

“When we’re looking for compassion, we need someone who is deeply rooted, is able to bend and, most of all embraces us for our strengths and struggles.”

“I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness – it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude.”

“Faith is a place of mystery, where we find the courage to believe in what we cannot see and the strength to let go of our fear of uncertainty.”

Shame, blame, disrespect, betrayal, and the withholding of affection damage the roots from which love grows. Love can only survive these injuries if they are acknowledged, healed and rare.”


Books by Brené Brown

  • Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts, by Brené Brown, 2018.
  • Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone, by Brené Brown, 2017.
  • Rising Strong: The Reckoning, The Rumble, The Revolution, by Brené Brown, 2015.
  • Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, by Brené Brown, 2012.
  • The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are, by Brené Brown, 2010.
  • The Power of Vulnerability: Teachings on Authenticity, Connection, & Courage, by Brené Brown, 2012.
  • Men, Women, and Worthiness: The Experience of Shame and the Power of Being Enough, by Brené Brown, 2012.
  • Rising Strong as a Spiritual Practice, by Brené Brown, 2017.
  • Gifts of Imperfect Parenting: Raising Children with Courage, Compassion, and Connection, by Brené Brown, 2013.
  • Connections: A 12-Session Psychoeducational Shame-Resilience Curriculum, by Brené Brown, 2009.
  • I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn’t), Making the Journey from “What Will People Think?” to “I Am Enough” by Brené Brown, 2007.
  • Women & Shame: Reaching Out, Speaking Truths & Building Connection, by Brené Brown, 2004.
  • Summary – Rising Strong: The Reckoning – the Rumble – the Revolution, by Brené Brown, 2017.

Questions about Brené Brown


“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.”

– Brené Brown

BIG IDEAS:

“Strategies for Influence” explores and shares the BIG IDEAS from the Leaders of Influence that can help you with your Career, Business, and Leadership. Click on any of the links below to explore the Big Ideas that have influenced our work and culture.

Mini-MBA of the big ideas that have shaped Careers, Leadership, and Business.


“Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.”

– Brené Brown

Brené Brown – Videos

The Power of Vulnerability – Brené Brown – TEDxHouston

5 Pieces of Life-Changing ADVICE from Brené Brown | #MentorMeBrené


“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.”

– Brené Brown

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