Thanks to all who attended this month’s membership meeting! Our February speaker, Melissa Hiatt, presented on “Rumbling with Vulnerability.” Hiatt is trained and certified by Dr. Brene Brown to facilitate “Dare to Lead,” “Daring Greatly,” and “Rising Strong” training. She is president of Levav Leadership Consulting, senior consultant at Leadership Vision Consulting, faculty mentor at Sioux Falls Seminary and the pediatric chaplain at Sanford Health.

Rumbling with Vulnerability
Melissa Hiatt

Vulnerability is the feeling you get when there is uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure. It is the birthplace of fear and shame, but it is also the place where love, connection, innovation, success, joy and hope are forged and formed.

Rumbling with vulnerability is the most important of the four skill sets of courage. If you cannot rumble with vulnerability, you cannot do the other three, which include living into your values, braving trust, and learning to rise.

It is our armor against vulnerability, not fear, that gets in the way of daring leadership. The heart of daring leadership is comprised of the following:

  • You cannot get to courage without rumbling with vulnerability. Embrace the suck: Vulnerability does not feel good. Lean into it.
  • Self-awareness and self-love matter. Who we are is how we lead. Stop working your problems out on other people.
  • Courage is contagious. To scale daring leadership and build courage in teams and organizations, we must cultivate a culture in which brave work, tough conversations, and whole hearts are the expectation, and armor is not necessary or rewarded.

Six Myths of Vulnerability:

  1. Vulnerability is weakness. Two paradoxes: Vulnerability looks like courage in you but weakness me. It is the first thing I want to see in you so I know you are real, but the last thing I want you to see in me.
  2. I do not do vulnerability. This is a myth because you are alive. Because you are alive, you are vulnerable to risk and exposure.
  3. I can go it alone. Look around you. You are affected by people. Humans have an irreducible need to feel loved and connected. We are neurologically wired to seek connection.
  4. You can engineer the uncertainty and discomfort out of vulnerability. Systemic vulnerability vs. relational vulnerability. We do not want systemic vulnerability. We want to keep our hospitals and banks safe from cyber attacks. We do want relational vulnerability. We need to have the courage to speak up, again and again.
  5. Trust comes before vulnerability. Chicken and egg scenario. Trust and vulnerability go together.
  6. Vulnerability is disclosure (or oversharing). Vulnerability is not sharing everything about your life on Facebook. That is crafting a message. Perhaps the real vulnerability is learning to share your story with the people who have earned the right to hear it.

How to Rumble:
1. Recognize what vulnerability feels like.
2. Check the myths. What myth are you buying into?
3. Embrace the suck.
4. Develop Grounded Confidence. (Rumble Skills + Curiosity + Practice = Grounded Confidence.)

To learn more about Melissa Hiatt and “Rumbling with Vulnerability,” visit her website:


Thank you to our meeting sponsor, SDN Communications. Sponsors allow us to bring in talented, quality speakers like we saw this month. As a sponsor, the speaker comes to your business for a one-hour presentation to your staff/customers and a table of six guests for the lunch. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a sponsor, contact Mindy Kroll or Sheila Hoff.

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