Like employees everywhere, federal workers want strong leadership and straight answers.

Despite a two-year rise in job satisfaction between 2006 and 2008, about 212,000 federal workers consistently gave lower ratings than private-sector workers on their supervisors’ leadership skills, openness and willingness to help employees advance.

Just under half the federal workers, 48%, are satisfied with how their bosses tell them what’s happening in their organizations—18 percentage points below workers in the private sector. And 66% of federal workers think their immediate bosses are doing a good job, compared with 74% of private-sector workers.

Topping the list of the best agencies to work for was the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The human resources director there credits NRC executives with listening, saying, “They are the real human resources managers.”

— Adapted from “Money’s Nice, but a Good Boss Is Better,” Steve Vogel, The Washington Post.

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