The Reading List: Our favorite articles in December

The Brief
Every week, we curate the best articles and blog posts on the Web on topics like leadership, behavioral science and relationship management from both the for- and nonprofit sectors, and put them together in our two RelSci 5 newsletters. Every month, we post the most-clicked-on pieces, just in case you missed them. Below, find the studies, surveys and tips you–and we–couldn’t stop talking about. And be sure to sign up for the RelSci 5, delivered every Thursday to your inbox.

1. An eye for greatness.  
What makes an employee outstanding? Any team leader worth his salt knows it isn’t simply about performance or efficiency. But spotting–and shaping–the star players takes a keen eye; start with these ten signs of excellence.

2. Try a little manipulation.
The word may have negative connotations, but manipulation isn’t just for super villains and middle school queen bees. Everyone engages in some social manipulation now and then, and understanding how to use this particular kind of psychology can actually make the workplace a lot more pleasant for you and your colleagues.

3. Making reverse mentorship work for you. 
Reverse mentorship has been making headlines as a way for senior employees to mine their younger colleagues for tech trends as well as fresh approaches to problem-solving. But the benefits of this kind of relationship aren’t limited to the menthe; for junior employees, reverse mentoring is a way to build a more robust professional network while improving–and demonstrating–their leadership abilities. Here’s how to get started.

4. Lessons from Facebook’s millennial strategy.
No other generation has presented the kind of turnover challenges that millennials have since they entered the workforce several years ago. To hang on to talent longer, companies like Facebook are embracing some unique strategies; here are five ways the social media giant manages to hold on to itinerant twenty- and thirty-somethings.

5. The new era of giving.
A recent report found that earned revenue, net assets and endowments are on the rise for America’s nonprofits, while individual, corporate and government funding continues to decline. What does that mean for nonprofits looking to balance their books? It’s time to focus on engaging individuals.


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