David L. Bradford and Carole Robin

Book cover image

Narrated By: David L. Bradford, Carole Robin

Duration: 10 hours and 19 minutes

What to expect

Brought to you by Penguin.

A transformative guide to building more fulfilling relationships with colleagues, friends, partners, and family, based on the landmark Interpersonal Dynamics ("Touchy Feely") course at Stanford's Graduate School of Business

The ability to create strong relationships with others is crucial to living a full life and becoming more effective at work. Yet many of us find ourselves struggling to build solid personal and professional connections, or unable to handle challenges that inevitably arise when we grow closer to others. When we find ourselves in an exceptional relationship--the kind of relationship where we feel fully understood and supported for who we are--it can seem like magic. But the truth is that the process of building and sustaining these relationships can be described, learned, and applied.

David Bradford and Carole Robin taught interpersonal skills to MBA candidates for a combined seventy-five years in their legendary Stanford Graduate School of Business course Interpersonal Dynamics (affectionately known to generations of students as "Touchy Feely") and have coached and consulted to hundreds of executives for decades.

In Connect, they show readers how to take their relationships from shallow to exceptional, along the way offering time-tested strategies for giving feedback, negotiating boundaries, and working through disagreements. Through stories of people navigating tricky moments in relationships--all based on real dynamics Bradford and Robin have witnessed or experienced--we see the six hallmarks of an exceptional relationship in action: authenticity, vulnerability, honesty, a willingness to ask for and offer help, a shared commitment to growth, and an ability to deal productively with conflict.

Filled with relatable scenarios and research-backed insights, Connect will be an important resource for anyone hoping to improve existing relationships and build new ones at any stage of life.

© David L. Bradford, Carole Robin 2021(P) Penguin Audio 2021


Interpersonal communication and skills, Self-help, personal development and practical advice, Sociology: family and relationships, Dating, relationships, living together and marriage: advice and issues, Intergenerational relationships: advice and issues

Listen to a sample

'I can't believe how much I learned about myself and about how others see the world'; 'I feel so much better equipped to create the kinds of relationships I want in my life'; 'Worth the entire price of admission'; 'This course changed my life; it was transformational'

Previous students of 'Interpersonal Dynamics'


The Times

Carole and David are masters at helping people bring IQ and EQ together to satisfy both and be successful. I recommend this book

Ray Dalio, founder of Bridgewater and author of NYT No.1 bestseller 'Principles'

At Stanford's business school, the most popular course isn't tech or entrepreneurship-it's a class on interpersonal dynamics that's affectionately known as Touchy-Feely. David Bradford and Carole Robin created the course, and their book is the next best thing to taking it. It's full of thoughtful, actionable advice on showing vulnerability, setting healthy boundaries, earning and restoring trust, handling feedback and conflict, and building and strengthening relationships

It's never been clearer that meaningful relationships are critical to a fulfilling and healthy life. Connect is a practical and timely book I highly recommend that shows us that by learning to connect with ourselves, we can more easily connect with others and build thriving relationships

Arianna Huffington, Founder & CEO, Thrive Global

Relationships are crucial to our happiness, and David Bradford and Carole Robin have spent decades teaching grateful students about them. This wide-ranging book, which builds on their famous course, will help anyone make their relationships exceptional, whether at home or in the workplace, and help them to lead better, more fulfilled lives. Connect is really valuable for everyone

Julia Samuel, author of Grief Works and This Too Shall Pass

Bradford and Robin, with their 40 years of experience at Stanford, select carefully and analyze real examples, and propose concepts from which we can develop the soft skills so often in short supply today's society. From self-knowledge to building trust, from giving feedback to gaining influence, the book illustrates how those skills are critical and can be nurtured, everywhere, across cultures. A precious guide on the challenging path to effective and rewarding interpersonal relationships

Henri-Claude de Bettignies, Professor Emeritus, INSEAD & Distinguished Professor Emeritus, CEIBS (Shanghai)

Learning to connect across differences and develop relationships in which we can actually see and hear others for who they are is becoming an imperative for nations and individuals alike. Connect is a carefully structured set of concepts and practices that readers can apply to everything from their marriages to their management challenges. It's a treasure!

Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO, New America

At LinkedIn, we made "Relationships Matter" one of our core values because the personal connections you make persist across jobs, companies, and careers. Connect offers a compelling and highly accessible roadmap for building relationships that lead to professional success and personal fulfilment. I highly recommend this book

Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and co-author of 'Blitzscaling' and 'The Alliance'

I owe most of what I have accomplished in both my career and in my personal life to the lessons I learned in the course on which Connect is based. I can't wait to give a copy of Connect to my teammates, my family, and my friends

Dara Treseder, CMO, Peloton and Board Director, PG&E

In Connect, my colleagues Carole and David have written a practical and easy-to-read book. They have succeeded in bringing to life a legendary course at the Stanford Business School

Joel Peterson, Former Chairman, JetBlue Airways

Carole and David have a unique and invaluable feel for the human psyche and an instinct, tuned over thousands of examples, for how to get the most out of our relationships with others, and ultimately ourselves. This book is a treasure chest of their wisdom, shared with us all

Scott Kriens, Chairman, Juniper Networks and Co-creator, 1440 Multiversity

What's different about this book? You'll see how many dilemmas at work that you thought were about priorities or strategy or "right and wrong," were really about relationships all along. The future of work will reward those who can see past numbers and bullet points into the map of relationships. Carole and David sketch that map for you

Roy Bahat, venture capitalist at Bloomberg Betad

One of my goals, and the reason I founded MasterClass, is my fervent commitment to democratizing access to the world's best. I am thrilled that the immensely valuable lessons in Connect are now available to millions of people. I encourage anyone who cares to develop stronger and more meaningful relationships anywhere in their life to read this book

David Rogier, Founder and CEO at MasterClass

Decades in business have shown me that building high-trust relationships is one of the most important keys to success, whether in negotiations or on the basketball court. With practical insights into relationship building in both personal and professional environments, Connect is the best book in its class

Irv Grousbeck, entrepreneur, co-owner of the NBA Boston Celtics and professor at the Stanford Business School

These intimate conversations between outwardly successful people, privately tormented by anxieties about their relationships and reputations, are engrossing and moving. A book with important implications for institutions whose atmosphere is polluted by misunderstandings and incompatibilities

Theodore Zeldin, author of 'An Intimate History of Humanity'

There's no better time to learn how to create more meaningful interactions and relationships, and Connect helps us do just that. Based on the legendary Stanford Graduate School of Business course, this book is written by two Interpersonal Dynamics masters. The more people who read this, the stronger our families, organizations, communities and institutions will be

Alexa von Tobel, Managing Partner of Inspired Capital and New York Times-Bestselling Author of Financially Fearless

Carole Robin and David Bradford's Connect is the senior executive must-read from the gurus of our time

Bill Meehan III, Raccoon Partners Lecturer in Strategic Management, Stanford University GSB

Fabulous . . . I think everyone should get a copy because it gives us practical tools that we can use in everyday life . . . this book is a masterpiece that's going to help so many people all around the world transform their relationships, their health and their happiness