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Close to a quarter (22%) of nonprofits credit dissatisfaction or disengagement with current leadership as a primary driver of voluntary turnover. This finding, from the 2019 Nonprofit Talent Retention Practices report, is not surprising. We have all dealt with difficult bosses or at least know a person or two that have. Despite the breakdown, many struggle to make the best of a bad situation for the good of their organizations. After all, mission-driven talent is committed to bigger causes and efforts greater than ourselves. We are compelled by missions to which we strive to apply our talents and strengths. 

Let’s face it. Providing and receiving constructive feedback can be difficult for all parties involved. But, it is easier to face challenging conversations when each party (1) is emotionally mature and prepared to tactfully deal with pushback and (2) does not personalize the feedback. To help you as an employee cope with difficult leadership, and to help leaders and their staff navigate this conundrum, we have done a couple things. First we developed a piece for C-suite leadership to assessment their impact on retention. And second, we compiled a list of resources for staff dealing with challenging leadership. 

10 Brilliant Tips for Dealing With a Difficult Boss (The Muse)

In an ideal world, we would all have fantastic managers—bosses who helped us succeed, who made us feel valued, and who were just all-around great people…

How To Handle A Bad Boss: 7 Strategies For ‘Managing Up’ (Forbes)

Before you start planning an exit strategy, it would be wise to rethink how you can better manage the boss you already have –for all their flaws and shortcomings…

Managing Your Boss (American Psychological Association)

Successfully managing a difficult boss is a challenge but often feasible. First, you should try to understand the reasons for your boss’ difficult behavior…

What to Do When You Have a Bad Boss  (Harvard Business Review)

 A study by the American Psychological Association found that 75% of Americans say their “boss is the most stressful part of their workday.”

We Have to Talk: A Step-By-Step Checklist for Difficult Conversations (Judy Ringer)

There are dozens of books on the topic of difficult, crucial, challenging, fierce, important (you get the idea) conversations.Those times when you know you should talk to someone, but you don’t…

How To Approach The Boss When Conflict Arises At Work (Forbes)

“When you have individuals coming from all different backgrounds and beliefs merging together in the workplace, conflict is inevitable,” says Andy Teach…

This list of external resources have been curated and is not intended to endorse any product or service. Thoughts expressed in these articles are those of each article’s author and not those of Nonprofit HR.

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