Authentic Leadership and the Authentically Difficult Employee

As an academic leader, one of the most difficult challenges I have faced has been dealing with an authentically difficult employee—a seasoned staff or faculty member who does not stop repeating undesired behaviors that disrupt the department but that are not severe enough to warrant disciplinary action. These behaviors include all sorts of passive-aggressive actions, including lying, claiming not to have been told about deadlines, not taking responsibility for actions, blaming others, etc. In effect, this person is miserable and is making everyone else miserable.

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