What does it mean to truly listen in a way that has enormous impact, also in the business world?
When we commit to truly listening to someone, we open doors for quality connections that can lead to transformation and relationship satisfaction. It’s through listening that we can build bridges of understanding, empathy, and trust that allow us to connect with people on a deeper level. This, in turn, positively impacts organizational outcomes.
In today’s episode, we have a special guest, my good friend and mentor, Dr. Avi Kluger, who is a renowned expert in the field of listening and a great listener.
Dr. Avi Kluger is a professor of organizational behavior at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and his area of research focuses on the dangers of feedback and the benefits of listening in relationships and at work. Avi has published numerous studies on the topic of listening in leading publications, including a meta-analysis on the power of listening at work. He was the Director of the Executive MBA program of the School (2010-2014). In his capacity as a director, he put strong emphasis on helping executives develop soft skills (e.g., negotiation, listening, self-presentation) in addition to developing an integrative view of the business.
In this episode, Avi shares his insights on the definition of listening, which may surprise you. And that with listening, it may be hard, but the rewards of a deep and meaningful connection are more than worth it. If you commit to listen, you will find your relationships transform and flourish. Because then you open yourself up to the vulnerability of someone else’s thoughts and emotions, and allow them to touch your heart.
“Listening appears to create first and foremost good connections, good relationships, trust, and relationship satisfaction.” – Avi Kluger
Listening SUPERPOWER Notes:
01:25 – One experience when he felt the power of listening truly working
04:32 – How listening creates quality connections that reduces depression, anxiety and fosters vigor for life
10:20 – Discussing a question included in a listening research paper: Can we get rid of the adjective?
12:30 – Defining listening: Devotion to being with the other.
19:18 – Getting a little deeper into what it means to decide to devote yourself into listening
22:20 – What makes listening so hard: Because you have to completely let go.
26:16 – How listening lays the foundation of good connection with the ripple effect of relationship satisfaction
29:53 – Creating a challenge through listening even when things are already going smoothly
31:05 – Avi imparting some gold of wisdom: You decide to listen. It’s gonna be hard. If you commit yourself, you may find that your prison walls are moving away from you and you have much more freedom in your life.
- Kluger, A. N., & Itzchakov, G. (2022). The power of listening at work. Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior, 9, 121-146. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-orgpsych-012420-091013
- Jane Dutton: https://michiganross.umich.edu/faculty-research/faculty/jane-dutton
- Guy Itzchakov: https://listeningalchemy.com/listen-in/listening-research-and-its-power-with-associate-professor-guy-itzchakov/
“Those fleeting moments of high quality connection, something in us changes for the better and as a result of it, it’s like a deposit in our mental wellbeing bank. It reminds us that we are connected, reduces our depression, anxieties, and provides us with vigor for life, combined with sometimes new understanding of ourselves, the world, or both.” – Avi Kluger
“If you decide to devote yourself, it’s a continuous decision, because this devotion could be for two minutes. It may disappear, you may bring it back and the devotion could be created by the listener, but it could also be created by the speaker.” – Avi Kluger
“Every time you go into this space of true connection with another human being, you’re being transformed.” – Avi Kluger
“Many people are so lonely, entrenched in their own political camp. They cannot see the humanity of people from the other side, let alone listen to them.” – Avi Kluger
“We are sticking to what we know and to the worldview that we have. And this prison is serving us well. But the question is, is it well enough?” – Avi Kluger
“While listening may take away time from work, it actually saves in the long term…a lot of time and creates better outcomes.” – Avi Kluger
“Once good relationships are created, more knowledge transfers in the organization, more positive attitudes are formed, like job satisfaction, motivation, and hence, and we see evidence of better performance, including objective measures of performance.” – Avi Kluger
Connect with Avi Kluger:
- Website: https://www.avi-kluger.com/
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/avikluger/?originalSubdomain=il
Connect with Raquel Ark: