What is it about?

Across three studies of teams that vary in their level of acquaintance (no acquaintance, moderate acquaintance, high acquaintance), we found that humble behavior changes when working with different people, that working with someone particularly humble makes their co-workers feel uniquely psychological safety, and perform uniquely better in their presence.

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Why is it important?

Our research shows the importance of detecting "power couples"—dyad members that bring out the best in one another—for outstanding job outcomes. We also shed light on the fact that each employee should choose to work with people who behave humbly and make them feel psychologically safe rather than making a choice based on their level of performance.


Working on this paper with the other co-authors was a live example and a showcase of the conclusions of this research. Humility is critical in working with other people. I hope this work draws the attention of managers and practitioners to notice the nuances within work teams and detect the dyads working best together.

Michal Lehmann
Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Relationship-specific (dyadic) humility: How your humility predicts my psychological safety and performance., Journal of Applied Psychology, October 2022, American Psychological Association (APA), DOI: 10.1037/apl0001059.
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