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Warning to Managers: Survey Shows Most Workers Will Quit a Bad Boss

82% of workers across 10 industries say they would quit their jobs due to their manager’s poor behavior, including not being open/honest, micromanaging, and disrespecting personal time.

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–GoodHire, a leading provider of employment and background screening services, today released Horrible Bosses: A Survey of the American Workforce. The report, surveying 3,000 US full-time workers across 10 industries, reveals insights about manager-employee relationships. Notably, the survey shows American workers most desire a manager who is honest and authentic; yet, only 39% said their manager is open and honest about promotion opportunities, and when it comes to salary and compensation conversations, just 44% said their manager is open and honest.

Interestingly, while many (70%) said they strongly enjoy or somewhat enjoy working for their manager, a large group (82%) of American workers said they might quit their job because of a bad manager. This is especially telling as the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the number of American workers quitting their jobs hit record highs in November 2021 with 4.5 million people leaving.

Of the industry sectors examined in the GoodHire survey, Healthcare workers (88%) are the group most likely to quit their jobs because of bad management. On the other end of the spectrum, Software professionals (73%) and Real Estate workers (78%) are the least likely to quit due to issues with their managers. Hospitality workers most enjoy working for their managers (80%), while Real Estate (55%) and Legal professionals (56%) least enjoy it. Other industries surveyed include Education, Finance & Insurance, Human Resources, Marketing & Sales, and Science & Tech.

More people than ever are working remotely in 2022, and the new paradigm of using digital communication tools like Zoom and Slack to check in — either scheduled or unscheduled — can be a source of contention for workers. The findings showed the biggest gripe workers had with their managers was micromanagement and requests for employees to work outside of working hours. By contrast, employees said the qualities they liked most in a manager were honesty and authenticity. Survey results show:

  • Only 22% of American workers said their managers definitely trust them to be productive and hard-working during remote working hours.
  • Only 46% of American workers said their managers respect personal time away from work after working hours.
  • 63% of American workers said they have either too few or too many meetings with their managers.
  • 62% of American workers said their managers virtually or digitally communicate too much or not enough.

The survey produced timely and relevant data related to remote work, digital communication in the workplace, and employee-manager relations during a time in history that has redefined the way the two work and interact together. With more than 11 million job openings recorded, managers have a competitive field to find the right candidates and many are scrambling to secure and retain talent.

“As the pandemic drags on, workplace dynamics have changed drastically,” said GoodHire’s Chief Operating Officer Max Wesman. “Now, employees have more leverage so managers need to step up and work on being better managers, and that includes showing empathy, improving transparency, and keeping the lines of communication open. Our survey is telling us that when employees aren’t satisfied, they’ll quit because they see the thriving job market and other opportunities available to them.”

Commenting on the survey, Mike Grossman, CEO of GoodHire’s parent company, Inflection, mused that he’s experienced his fair share of “horrible bosses” and works hard as a leader to cultivate a fair and inclusive workplace culture. “I’ve spent most of my career in Silicon Valley and I’ve come across my share of bad bosses. Fortunately, I now lead a company that has a great group of talented people and I don’t take that for granted. In fact, it’s so important to me to surround myself with good people that I have interviewed every last-round job candidate for the past four years. That’s getting more challenging as the company is growing quickly, but I continue to believe it’s essential to build a strong team based on shared company values,” Grossman said.

For more survey results, visit

Survey Methodology

All data found within the Horrible Bosses: A Survey of the American Workforce report is derived from a survey by GoodHire conducted online via survey platform Pollfish from December 4, 2021 to December 9, 2021. The survey report includes the full methodology.

For survey graphics, please visit:

About GoodHire

Since 2013, GoodHire has been a trusted background check partner to more than 100,000 organizations. With its innovative, technology-first approach, coupled with an intense focus on customer delight, GoodHire has redefined the background check service industry. GoodHire uses automation and advanced data engineering to help customers accelerate hiring and make more confident hiring decisions. Thanks to its easy-to-use platform and responsive, FCRA-trained support team, our customer satisfaction and NPS scores match those of America’s most trusted brands. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, GoodHire is owned and operated by Inflection. To learn more, visit