Anyone who knows Melanie Katzman has admired her ability to form genuine connections. As a clinical psychologist and corporate consultant, it’s the key to her impact. In this user-friendly, book, she shares practical tips for following in her footsteps to build trusting relationships.”

ADAM GRANT New York Times bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take and host of the TED podcast WorkLife

People often ask, what’s the appropriate way to show my colleagues that I care about them at a human level? Drawn from Katzman’s extensive expertise as a psychologist and coach, CONNECT FIRST is a treasure trove of actionable techniques you can use every day to build strong relationships at work. Once you apply them, you'll enjoy your work—and the people you work with—so much more that you’ll do the best work of your life.”

KIM SCOTT New York Times bestselling author of Radical Candor

A how-to guide that will appeal to managers and leaders seeking advice for improving and maintaining morale in workplace culture.


Absolutely terrific! In clear prose, Melanie Katzman distills the insights and lessons from over 30 years of studying behavior in the workplace. There is something for everyone: graduates starting their first jobs, newly promoted managers, and veteran CEOs. I only wish I had this wise advice at the beginning of my career.”

PETER ROSE Senior Advisor, Blackstone and Vice Chairman, Sard Verbinnen

Melanie is a provocateur of innovation. In CONNECT FIRST, she holds up a mirror that allows us to laugh, learn, and alter our behavior. She reconnects us to our most human desire—to experience and spread joy.”

WELLINGTON NOGUEIRA Founder, Doctors of Joy

At a time when we’re more connected to our devices than we are to each other, C-suite whisperer Melanie Katzman reminds us that it’s the strength of our relationships that lay the foundation for greater success and joy at work. Witty and wise, she gifts us with 52 research-based, easy-to-implement tactics that will unlock connection and foster deep bonds in any workplace.”

CATHERINE STEINER-ADAIR, EdD Author of The Big Disconnect

In this dynamic, digitalized, and radically changing world, never before has instilling meaning and purpose in our work and deepening connections with others been more important. Drawing on her extensive experience as trusted advisor to senior executives, Melanie offers a wealth of actionable insights which are grounded in neuroscience and psychology and vividly brought to life through case studies. CONNECT FIRST is an invaluable resource.”

NISHA RAO-SCHILLER Head of Leadership Planning and Development, Deutsche Bank

I found myself mid-chapter, putting this book down and instantly emailing one of my producers to tell her ‘thank you’ for an error she caught on my show yesterday just before I went live! This book is full of brilliant actionable items that we ALL can do to connect, be better employees, be better humans.”

BROOKE BALDWIN Anchor, CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin

We are all starving to connect and somehow forgot the basics of how to do it. With CONNECT FIRST, Melanie cracks the code on how to tap into our humanity in order to influence others, be successful, and live a fuller life. Simple and sophisticated tools we all desperately need and didn’t even know it. Thank you, Melanie.”

CHRIS McCARTHY President, MTV, VH1, CMT, and Logo Media

Melanie is a great storyteller. And like the storytellers of old who used stories to impart wisdom, Melanie uses them to illustrate very practical tips that enable one to form much more real, deeper connections with colleagues and with people you are meeting for the first time.  Better yet, these lessons will help make for a more productive and fun workplace. I found myself immediately implementing many of her insights. Thank you, Melanie for this gift.”

STEVEN TALLMAN Partner and Head of Global Operations, Bain & Company

CONNECT FIRST is an eye-opening gift. With every turn of the page, one will instantly feel liberated. This book cures in one quick read what we’ve spent decades foolishly trying to deprogram in the corporate setting. Melanie, in her practical, empirical, and honest approach has offered us the antidote for our time: being human is a workplace superpower.”

CORY HAIK Chief Digital Officer, Vice Media

For those looking to make a positive difference at work, Katzman offers an easy-to-use, encouraging guide that employees at all levels can adopt to instigate change.”