In a study of 7,272 U.S. adults, Gallup found that 50 percent of employees left their job “to get away from their manager to improve their overall life at some point in their career.” The single biggest decision you make in your job — bigger than all the rest — is who you name manager. When you name the wrong person manager, nothing fixes that bad decision. Not compensation, not benefits — nothing.”
If you’re an executive concerned about low morale, employee satisfaction or engagement, or — at worst — a revolving door at your company, start by looking at who your current managers are. You have a choice to make: Develop their leadership skills or filter them out of their leadership roles. But how when most HR departments side with managers when employees question their roles?
The first thing to do is to ensure that you document every conversation and email between you and your manager. If you have a conversation with your manager follow it with an email or the key points. Keep a hard paper file of every issue that could back to haunt you later on. Remember that if a manager wants to get rid of you he/she will find a way to entrap you.
However, if you’re really in that situation you need to get the hell out even if you really like the company you’re working for. The stress of working for a bad manager is not worth any title or benefit package.
Another thing you don’t want to do is to talk with coworkers about your manager. We all have a lot of colleagues at work, but very few friends who will risk their jobs backing you.
Should you go to HR? That depends. Can you trust your HR people and will they keep your conversation in confidence? My rule of thumb is that once you go to HR you are making the decision to leave the company.
A lot of people tend to ponder “why are there so many bad managers?”. That answer is complex. Too many people in corporate America get promoted because they are well connected politically and great at playing the corporate game. If, by chance, you have a good manager then stick to them like glue. They are a rare breed and are very hard to find.
Originally published at www.hrandmanagement.com on June 17, 2017.