People don’t leave jobs, they leave horrible bosses. This has been accepted as a universal truth, but how do we find those horrible bosses to begin with? Fortunately for us, there some important skills these managers are lacking that make them pretty easy to spot. Look for the managers with the following traits:

Lack Of Empathy

The fact that horrible bosses lack empathy is not a new revelation, but the fact that bad managers can’t put themselves in the position of their teams a leading cause of conflict. Empathy allows us to connect. It keeps us humble and it keeps us kind. Employees leave managers who refuse to understand them, or at least do their best to see the world from their perspective. One of the easiest things to do once we’re promoted to management is to forget what it’s like to actually do the job. When we show empathy and attempt to try and walk through the world in their shoes before passing judgment, our tone is less harsh, people feel heard and valued which is key to retaining key talent.

Inability To Praise

Intertwined with a lack of empathy is an inability to praise. Horrible Bosses, most of the time, are people who don’t need praise. Most of the time, they’re incredibly self-motivated and because they don’t need praise they forget that the folks who work with them thrive on praise and validation. People leave jobs and careers when they don’t feel appreciated by their superiors. The simplest and most effective way to keep employees engaged and working hard is by showing them the honest and sincere appreciation that we all crave. It’s where the lack of empathy manifests itself in its ugliest form. If you want to hold onto key talent, avoid the sin of the horrible boss and catch your team doing something right.

Lack Of Courage

It takes courage to lead. It takes courage to say what needs to be said. It takes courage to admit when we need help. It takes courage to show up and be ourselves. Horrible bosses chicken out. They lead from behind and avoid the confrontation that comes from important conversations. Horrible bosses are so concerned with their image and how they look that they stop being authentic. The managers that people flock from lack the courage that it takes for leadership because they aren’t brave enough to step up when it’s required. Courage is like a muscle and it grows the more we use it. If we want to lead, showing courage daily is the price of entry.

People don’t leave jobs, they leave horrible bosses and they’re easy to spot. Look for the manager with a lack of empathy, an inability to praise and the lack of courage to lead. These skills can be developed and most of the time, they’ve never been given the tools to learn. Knowing this, the choice becomes clear; give them the tools or accept high turnover as a fact of life. Choose wisely.