A fifth of people would turn down a job offer if their new manager had a bad reputation, according to new research released today from HR Services group Penna.

The poll of 2000 employees also found that those who feel they are being poorly managed are more likely to leave a job than tackle the issue with their HR department. One in seven (16%) respondents reported taking sick leave due to a bad manager while a quarter admitted that bad bosses had caused them to lose sleep. A fifth (21%) said they had been upset or cried in the workplace.

Penny de Valk, Managing Director of Penna Talent Practice said:

“Organisations need to realise that their management team is an integral part of their employer brand and, even if they offer staff an impressive benefits package, great work life balance, and fantastic development opportunities, if their management team isn’t up to scratch it will have a serious impact on their ability to attract and retain talent.”

Despite the research highlighting the negative consequences of bad managers, it revealed that many employees have made the best of a bad situation, with 17 percent saying they have learnt more from poor managers they’ve had in the past than from good ones.

The findings also illustrated the transformative effect a good manager can have.

More than a quarter of employees (27%) said they have had a good manager that has made them realise they can achieve more, and a further quarter (25%) have worked for a manager who has inspired them to further their career. More than one in five also credited a good manager with helping them to view things differently, and a further 16 percent said a good boss had helped them overcome confidence issues.

Penny de Valk added:

“It’s clear that the better the reputation and capability of your managers for leading and developing their teams, the more the most talented employees will be beating a path to your door  – and they’ll stay with you too.

In fact, managers should be the organisations ‘shop window’, so it’s essential to invest in their development if you want to attract and retain the brightest and the best people. Organisations should view their management as an untapped source of competitive advantage in the war for talent which will become an even more challenging battle in 2015.”