It’s a good thing for managers that they’re appointed rather than elected.

According to a recent poll by Monster.com, only 24% of employees would vote to retain their managers if they were given a chance. Some 25% would choose a colleague they thought would make a better manager, and 30% would promote themselves! (The rest – 21% – would hope a better candidate shows up from somewhere.)

Sobering results
Even though the results don’t represent all employees – Monster noted that the 577 users of its job board who participated weren’t randomly selected – they should sober any thoughtful manager, and perhaps raise the question: If they don’t like us, why not?

Here are some possible reasons. Feel free to ask yourself whether any apply to you:

  • Inability to listen. Employees will tune you out – and likely resent you – if you don’t listen carefully to them. You don’t have to agree all the time, but you must listen.
  • Failure to give or take criticism well. When you criticize employees, always describe specific instances where they can improve. If they criticize you, ask for specifics, too. It’ll help you do better and also show them you take the criticism seriously.
  • A misperception that conflict is bad, rather than inevitable and manageable. There will always be conflict in the workplace. Managers who hide their heads in the sand quickly lose their relevance and much of their influence.

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