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Brag!: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn without Blowing It
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Brag!: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn without Blowing It

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  805 Ratings  ·  110 Reviews
The renowned communication expert's subtle but effective plan for selling your best asset - yourself - without turning off those you're trying to impress.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published May 1st 2004 by Grand Central Publishing (first published January 1st 2003)
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Kressel Housman
This was one of the books recommended in Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office, and it's right along the same lines, but it focuses specifically on self-promotion. It might just as easily have been called How to Talk So Employers Will Listen and is full of "bragologues" to give you the gist. Here are the keys to a good bragologue: (1) tell it like a story (2) be enthusiastic about the subject and (3) sprinkle in your contribution to it along the way.

Here's my sample bragologue: "I never thought
Avolyn Fisher
Sep 23, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
In a nutshell, this book is about elevator speeches. If you have studied up on this subject before than this book may not prove to be all that ground breaking. If not, then you should definitely pick it up as it covers a very important topic in the business world and provides valuable nuggets sprinkled throughout.

I didn't care all that much for the format which was essentially a bunch of stories of other people, which is all nice and dandy but I could have analyzed the same stories and conclude
Tony Canas
A quick read recommended by a learning solutions specialist at work. I really enjoyed it. She recommended it after I gave a toastmaster's speech about branding yourself and self-promotion. She told the story of how in a former job everybody in her department was required to read it and how much she recommended the book. I'm already a pretty shameless self-promoter who is very confident but I figured I could learn a little about the "not blowing it" part. The book explains why making the numbers ...more
Sep 04, 2007 rated it it was ok
A book that has proven helpful and has made me a bit more selfaware, but didn't love it.
Paul Longstreth
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
Sunshine Rodgers
Jun 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this book as a way to work on my marketing and self-promotion tactics. The author definitely breaks it down and uses real life examples of what does and doesn't work when promoting yourself, your business, your career, etc. She re-defined what "bragging" is: rebuking the critics and sharing how, if used correctly, it can be a personal means and expression as confidence in yourself and what you are selling. I found this book enjoyable and easy to read. The author definitely knew what she w ...more
Feb 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I love this book because its unconventional and direct way of delivering ideas. Its structures are clearly divided by points and followed by explanations. Whats more about it is that for me, this book really match with The Dip by Seth Godin. While The Dip intelligently describe how we can achieve our goals and going through the bad times with persistence, it somehow pass an important point of how can we enter into the road that leads to our goals. Brag! is all about leveraging your capability to ...more
Nicole Fraser
Jul 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kathy Caprino ("Breakdown, Breakthrough: The Professional Woman's Guide to Claiming a Life of Passion, Power, and Purpose") recommends this book in her Career Success Training course, and I’m so glad she did.

"Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It" is changing my life from the inside out, firing me up to toot my horn and to have fun doing it!

Peggy Klaus is a top Fortune 500 professional development and executive coach who’s known for her colorful and frank advice, and her writ
May 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Bragging is an art and in this book Klaus explains how to shape bragging into a skill that can be used to for effective self-promotion. Many people have grown up thinking like Klaus, thinking that it was rude to talk positively about yourself to other people, and sure without some tact involved talking this way can come off as being narcissistic. In this book Klaus first guides the reader though the process of creating an unforgettable elevator speech which she refers to as a “Bragalogue” and a ...more
May 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 05, 2016 rated it liked it
If "brag" is a word you don't really like, "self-promotion" is probably even more accurate. As she talks about in the book, most of society is uncomfortable with self-promotion and even talking about their own strengths no matter how important or grounded in truth they may be. She tackles this social truth head on decomposing the issue and why it's important for people to just get over it and finding a balance between being that obnoxious person who only loves to toot his own horn and being an c ...more
Apr 13, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Shy at work
Shelves: career
Great advice here. If you expect other people to notice your work and for it to speak for itself - well guess what? A lot of it won't get noticed. But by learning how to talk about it tactfully, you can change your career path! And this book is a great way to learn that skill. Here's an example of what you can expect from this author:

I went to the author's workshop and she did this great exercise. First people were asked to describe 3 professional accomplisments. Then they were asked to talk a l
Jul 20, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audiobook as part of my women's group at work. Like most motivational books, this book is just fine. It has a lot of good tips and reminders that make common sense, but are easy to forget or not think about. I must admit I did have a few "a-ha!" moments, where I realized areas in my life that were severely lacking in the bragging department. My big takeaway is that I need to come up with a written list of my accomplishments, talents, interests, etc. (basically, I need to go th ...more
Daniel Silvert
Jul 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Peggy Klaus makes a persuasive case that self promotion is as valuable a career and business tool as any technical skill. Most of the book is spent demystifying the do’s and don’ts of quality bragging. The book’s biggest obstacle is the title itself. “Brag” has such a powerfully negative connotation in our culture that it’s an uphill battle for Klaus to transform bragging into something the average person, not to mention a shy one, would look forward to mastering. There are many examples that dr ...more
Mar 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is like exercise. You may not like to do it, but you do it because you know it's good for you.

Everyone should know how to tell a good story. It makes you more interesting to others, helps others remember you and the things you said, and helps you connect and engage with others. And, any good story should be about something you know well -- in this case you.

This book reminds us how important communicating the right way is, and especially when we're sharing our own stories.

I recommend
Jul 01, 2012 rated it it was ok
Useful tips. But I much prefer good in a room.
Quick read. BUt this book was more like a brochure with nice before and after photos; what I was looking for was an instruction manual.
Chapter 2 is the heart of the book. It's a twenty page overview of how to brag. The rest is a list of dos and don'ts about hangups that other people have.
I would have prefered 60% of the book spent as a workshop showing specific examples of how to create your brag bag- pros and cons for each one. As well as how to pr
Anne Stephenson
Jan 21, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: self-improvement
Overall, this book serves as a great reminder to be okay with self-promotion. That is, despite the fact you're raised to be humble, it's not only acceptable, but a necessity to brag. It's a must if you're looking to sell yourself, move up in your career or just be perceived as someone interesting. Rather than brag, or bore the listener with a litany of facts, the author suggests using language that tells a story. While I like many of the examples in the book, some seemed incredibly long. For mos ...more
Emily Markulis
Jul 01, 2013 rated it liked it
It's alright. Honestly nothing groundbreaking, though some of the true stories from her clients are interesting. And as much as she says that "tooting your horn" (a phrase I got sick of quickly) is about being the authentic you, the "schmoozing" described comes across as more of the same self-serving type of networking, where one is always looking over one's shoulder to see how a person could one day help them "get ahead." Bleh. I do sense that the basic message, that you can "brag" in a way tha ...more
Oct 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2012, career
This book seemed a little more hands-on than the other one (The Hard Truth About Soft Skills: Workplace Lessons Smart People Wish They'd Learned Sooner). It was pretty much exactly what it says - how to sell yourself (for performance reviews or job interviews or just networking). She has a questionnaire to get you started and gives tips that seemed actually useful. It could be a little more of a workbook - I know I'm terrible at motivating to do things like that - but I feel like all the informa ...more
Angela Johnson
Sep 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
I would say about 75% of this book was 3 stars. There were some interesting stories and certainly some helpful information on how to self-promote but it felt repetitive a lot. And a lot of the "bragalogues" didn't seem natural - they seemed overly scripted (the opposite of what the book preaches). However, in the last 25%, specifically the section on entrepreneurs and how to self-promote when you don't have a job or don't find your current job challenging/satisfying, I was interested and grabbed ...more
Nov 18, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anybody!
Shelves: bestrecommended
Puas banget bisa beli buku ini! Dulu, terakhir lihat sampulnya di rak toko buku QB, di jalan Sunda, yang sekarang udah tutup. Harganya lumayan mahal, hampir seratusan ribu gitu. Tapi kemarin aku bisa beli dengan harga HANYA 20 ribu! Hihihi...benar-benar pucuk dicinta, ulam tiba! Masalahnya, udah lama banget pengen punya buku ini. Maklum, sebagai orang Indonesia, apalagi kelahiran Jawa, gue kurang mahir dalam "menjual potensi diri". Nah, kalau posisi kalian mirip-mirip gue, coba deh baca buku ini ...more
Rashan Moore
Jan 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Peggy Klaus is really going out of her way and answered every question that someone needs to know about self-promotion. The structure the finesse the delivery the purpose and the pitfalls are all beautifully displayed for you in this book. There are some companion surveys which when answered first make the book solidify even more. Probably the most interesting tidbit I got out of this book is why I should talk about my personal hobbies with clients (I didn't think i had to I thought they were mi ...more
Mar 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When I first started reading this book I couldn't help but cringe. Talking about myself, making myself visible, and coming up with interesting tidbits about my life when I'm in the conversational hot seat are all things that I consider personal weak spots. But by the end I want to tell people to read this book. I listened to the audiobook but I want to get the paper copy and really workshop it. This is like STAR interviewing but goes a step further and tells you how to expand the skill to every ...more
Apr 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: borrowed, 2013, career
This was loaned to me by a manager, after consistent feedback that I need to be better at promoting myself at work. My main takeaway was that people aren't going to notice what you do for themselves, and the idea of the "brag bag", or having an updated collection of anecdotes and references to your own success. The 12 questions are a springboard for some pretty in depth thought if you're willing to do the work, and overall it seemed like a useful and very short/easy to read book. It remains to b ...more
Feb 19, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book is a quick read, full of mostly common sense. But it is a good reminder to present a positive version of yourself to others. And if you really took it to heart, there are good specific instructions for how to do that. The anecdotes are all very realistic. The one thing that bothered me about the layout of the book is the frequent call-out boxes of random tips that are stuck right in the middle of sections and have no bearing on the current discussion. This may already be fixed in a mor ...more
Pui San
Feb 25, 2015 rated it it was ok
The author writes well about the misconceptions/myths of bragging (ie why are we not used to self promotion) but when it comes to how-to shape your own self promotion pitch, I didn't feel that I gain that many ideas for my own personal success.

Although the author included a lot of real life examples, a lot of the lines still sounded braggy and pretentious. They weren't as punchy as I had hoped. The only key takeaway from the book is her take 12 evaluation questionnaire which are pretty much you
Jan 27, 2009 added it
This is a great book for anyone who is looking for a job, has a job review coming up in a few weeks, or has been passed over for promotions or commendations or raises. It is not really about bragging about yourself - that would bore people out of their gourds - but more about telling your job story artfully and legitimately.

So often we, especially women, are taught not to brag and to be humble. Where does this get us? ... But we can learn to tell our job story in such a way that people will be
Feb 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book was written for those of us smitten with Minnesota Nice, Swedish Sensibilities and Norwegian Scruples. The author shows how to skillfully say something that you set up helped someone else succeed, when to show your trophies, why to explain something (that is already listed on your resume), what to do when you telecommute and aren't seen at an office by your boss. A must read for shy and retiring job-seekers.
Oct 29, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: grown-up-books
A great read when about to interview for a job or going in for a performance review at work. It is funny, encouraging, helpful, and practical. I appreciate that she uses real life examples, including herself, and both good examples and bad examples. I think this book could go even beyond the world of work and help people who in general struggle with standing up for themselves or are reformed show-offs.
Sep 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Full of practical tips- this book is going to change how you think about yourself and share your identity with others. As an archaeologist I connected with how to present your own self-history. I am excitedly thinking through several bragging narratives, or bragalogues, now! Peggy changed the way I see interviews and cover letters- rather than chores, they are chances to connect with people. Thanks!
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