High quality listening

an avenue for growth at the Individual and organizational levels

I study how the experience of empathic and non-judgmental listening impacts speakers' emotions and perspectives. In addition, I conduct field studies about the effects of listening training on organizational outcomes.

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Guy Izchakov • Nurit Shnabel  • Geoffrey Haddock • Harry Reis • Avraham Natan (Avi) Kluger • Sjani Pindek • Gregory Maio • Della Adin Jamin • Lora Park • Eli Vinokur & Avinoam Yomtovian • Yaara Turjeman-Levi • Eyal Rechter • Pablo Briñol • Monisha Pasupathi • Geoffrey J. Leonardelli • Kimbelry Rios • Sharon Arieli • Michal Lehmann • Arik Cheshin • Roy Rave • Kenneth DeMarree • Dvori Saluk • Moran Mizrahi • Netta Weinstein • Niv Navon • Richard E. Petty • Moty Amar



Click here to learn about my publications and grants.

All Publications
Harry T. Reis, Guy Itzchakov, Karisa Y. Lee, and Yan Ruan
Extensive research has documented people’s desire for social partners who are responsive to their needs and preferences, and that when they perceive that others have been responsive, they and their relationships typically thrive. For these reasons, perceived partner responsiveness is well-positioned as a core organizing theme for the study of sociability in general, and close relationships in particular. Research has less often addressed the downstream consequences of perceived partner responsiveness for cognitive and affective processes. This gap in research is important because relationships provide a central focus and theme for many, if not most, of the behaviors studied by social psychologists. This chapter begins with an overview of the construct of perceived partner responsiveness and its centrality to relationships. We then review programs of research demonstrating how perceived partner responsiveness influences three core social-psychological processes: self-enhancing social cognitions, attitude structure, and emotion regulation. The chapter concludes with a brief overview of how deeper incorporation of relationship processes can enhance the informativeness and completeness of social psychological theories.
Guy Itzchakov
Can improving employees’ interpersonal listening abilities impact their emotions and cognitions during difficult conversations at work? The studies presented here examined the effectiveness of listening training on customer service employees. It was hypothesized that improving employees’ listening skills would (a) reduce their anxiety levels during difficult conversations with customers, (b) increase their ability to understand the customers’ point of view (i.e., perspective-taking), and (c) increase their sense of competence. The two quasi-experiments provide support for the hypotheses. Study 1 (N = 61) consisted of a pre-post design with a control group and examined the effect of listening training on customer service employees in a Fortune 500 company. Study 2 (N = 33) conceptually replicated the results of Study 1 using listening training conducted in one branch of a company that provides nursing services compared to another branch of the company that did not receive training. The results indicated that listening training had lasting effects on employees’ listening abilities, anxiety reduction, and perspective-taking during difficult conversations. The discussion centers on the importance of interpersonal listening abilities to the empowerment and well-being of employees in the workplace.
Guy Itzchakov, Jennifer Grau
Consider the following scenario. You are preparing for a team discussion about an important project. The meeting was scheduled for 15:00 p.m., but due to technical problems, it starts at 15:15. Your next meeting begins at 16:00. You notice two team members have joined by smartphones rather than computers. This is because their kids use the family’s laptops for virtual school. Three other employees are working from their bedrooms, the only private place in their apartments. You also see a side conversation in the chat room that has nothing to do with the meeting topic. During the meeting, several people turn the cameras off. You forge ahead. After introducing the project’s goals, you realize you were muted and need to start over. This situation would have seemed completely unrealistic just a few months ago. However, since COVID-19, these kinds of challenges are now commonplace. While listening was never easy in the best of times, it is even more challenging today. In part because we are all learning to do old things in new ways. Ann Richards famously contrasted challenges facing men and women, noting,“ ... Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backward and in high heels.” A similar comparison of the pre and post-pandemic workplace listening is apt. For many, virtual listening feels like dancing backwards in high heels, a bit off balance. We are all seeking to regain equilibrium in our communication. This article is intended to facilitate better virtual listening in the post-pandemic era. First, we introduce and define listening. Second, we present empirical evidence on the dyadic and organizational benefits of listening and listening training. Third, we discuss the challenges of virtual listening by providing specific examples from managers. Finally, we offer detailed recommendations for what managers and employees can do to improve their virtual listening skills and practices to support virtual listening.
Guy Itzchakov, Kenneth G. DeMarree
Interpersonal contexts can be complex because they can involve two or more people who are interdependent, each of whom is pursuing both individual and shared goals. Interactions consist of individual and joint behaviors that evolve dynamically over time. Interactions are likely to affect people’s attitudes because the interpersonal context gives conversation partners a great deal of opportunity to intentionally or unintentionally influence each other.
Guy Itzchakov, Moty Amar, Frenk Van Harreveld
Purchasing decisions are increasingly based on reviews by fellow consumers which often consist of positive and negative evaluations about the product (i.e. valence- inconsistency). We tested how the vividness of these reviews affects individuals' attitude ambivalence towards the product and their strategies to cope with this ambivalence. We hypothesized that reading vivid and valence-inconsistent reviews would lead to increased awareness of opposing features of attitudes towards the product (i.e. increased simultaneous accessibility) as compared to reading less vivid valence-inconsistent reviews. If this is indeed the case, individuals should feel more conflicted towards the attitude object (i.e. increased subjective ambivalence) and should be motivated to reduce it by using ambivalence-coping strategies, specifically (a) processing additional information that is congruent with their initial attitude and (b) delaying their decision. These hypotheses were mostly supported across five experiments. The experiments included manipulations of valence-inconsistent information between reviews and within a review including three pre- registered studies (Ns = 247, 396, 701, 433, 313, respectively).

The Power of Listening in a Polarized World (video)

By Templeton Staff

The deep connection that listening to each other well encourages is essential to human flourishing.

"When we are listened to well, we flourish."New research by Netta Weinstein and Guy Itzchakov is helping to build a deep and scientific understanding of what listening is, when and why it matters to the well-being of people, and in what circumstances. In this video from the Stories of Impact series, the researchers offer a look into the nuances of the listening process, exploring the roles both the speaker and the listener play in conversation. They share the conditions that facilitate listening well, and touch upon the importance of:

  • Listening to partners, children, and families, in the moment and with full attention
  • The impact of technology, eye contact, and body language on listening
  • The benefits of listening in the workplace.
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הוראה מקרוב

פרופ׳ גיא יצחקוב
החוג לשירותי אנוש

אני מלמד 13 שנים ויצא לי ללמד מגוון רחב של קורסים, מסטטיסטיקה, כלכלה, והתנהגות ארגונית ועד קורסי הקשבה בינאישית (נושא מחקר שלי. הטיפ שאני חושב עליו זה כמה שיותר ליצור אינטרטקציות חברתיות שבהן הסטודנטים ידונו ביניהם על החומר. לתת להם את המחרב והזמן לדון בינינם על החומר. ככל שהשנים עוברות הסטודנטים, מהחוויה שלי, פחות מתלהבים ממרצה שעומד מולם ונואם. אני מרגיש שהם רוצים יותר לבטא את עצמם. כאשר סטודנטים דנים על החומר

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