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Micromanagement 😱

The very mention of the word sends shivers down the spines of workforces up and down the country. Shoulders tense at the idea of a hovering manager lurking behind us, analysing our every move. And while some managers think it’s the only way to ensure performance...


It's nothing but a time trap.


And there is a better way.


I’ve heard plenty of employees complain that they are being micromanaged. But you know what I’ve never heard?


A leader who confesses to being a micromanager. 


And maybe that’s fair. It has a well-known negative stigma after all and not every micromanager deserves to be tarred with the same tyrannical, power-hungry brush. In fact, the road to micromanagement can be paved with good intentions.


Any of these sound familiar to you as a manager?

 

You don’t want to appear disconnected. 


Management can be isolating. You’ve risen through the ranks of your organisation but start to feel like you’ve lost touch with the actual work.

You have less direct contact with the shop floor or customers, so you seek information in as many ways as possible.


There’s nothing wrong with that is there?

After all, you only want to show everyone you still care and be involved.


But if your attempts to stay connected are driven by anxiety, the result is that managers end up looking at the same basic data in different, but ultimately unnecessarily repeated ways.

 


You want to pass on your expertise. 


You know your old job or workplace inside out.  What works, what doesn’t. And how to implement what is needed.

It’s what got you promoted. Surely passing on your knowledge to those newer to the role can’t hurt.


New starters would benefit from your knowledge.

No question.


But you have to know where to draw the line.

Higher level managers usually need to dial down their operational focus and learn how to be more strategic.

 


You want to be responsible.


You know that ultimately the buck stops with you and fear the negative performance of your team will reflect badly on you as a manager, so you try to oversee everything.


You adopt a “if you want it done right, do it yourself” mindset.


But if this desire is born from a fear over loss of control, you may be on the first steps to micromanagement without even realising.

 



Cost and Effect.

 

  • 79% of employees had experienced micromanagement

  • 71% said micromanagement interfered with their job performance

  • 85% reported their morale was negatively impacted

  • 69% considered changing jobs due to micromanagement

  • 36% actually changed jobs

 

This Forbes article data makes for scary reading, right?


And these are just some of the statistics. What can’t be measured in numbers is the cultural and behavioural impacts.

Micromanagement is like a smothering blanket when it comes to creativity and innovation.


It’s impossible for them to exist under such heavy scrutiny.


It signals you don’t trust your employees to do their job. Engagement is eroded over time.  Team confidence is sapped. And morale levels crash through the floor. 


High employee turnover. Staff who want to express themselves don’t stick around. It forces them out, leaving only yes men and yes women who begrudgingly tolerate it.


It takes its toll on you too. Micromanaging is exhausting. The potential for resentment of your staff not being able to perform as you feel they should. The belief that only you have the skillset to sign off a project. It’s too much.


So what can you do?

 

Equip your team with the skills they need to do their job properly.

Invest in the training they need to allow them to excel. Find out exactly what their barriers and limitations are. Instil the right processes to consistently get staff performance where it needs to be.


Have an open-door policy that allows them to come to you.

Create a culture of trust and accessibility. Make sure every single member of your team knows they are free to consult you on how to perform their role on projects. Support them from afar.


Give them space to excel. 

Let them run with ideas and creative angles. Wait until they have put something together they are proud of and see what they come up with. With the right belief, support, and encouragement, you might be surprised at the result.


Shift your focus from monitoring to empowering. 

Staff who know they have the backing of their manager and are free to express themselves in their role thrive. Reinforce your belief in their ability. Let them know you trust in their skill to get it done.


By fostering trust and autonomy, you not only boost the morale of your workforce. You free up your own valuable time to focus on what you need to do as well.


An in-house Daley Habits Bootcamp draws on decades of real-world experience to motivate your workforce, improve communication, and deliver change.


We equip you and your teams with the skills you need to master being more effective and drive your business forward.


Get in touch at www.daleyhub.com to find out how today.

And follow our LinkedIn page for more great management advice and content.

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