If you haven’t ever had a micromanager at work, you will soon.
There’s an epidemic in business today and it’s the complaint about micromanaging at work. People often complain about a micromanaging boss and most of the time it’s wrong. You are not being micromanaged.
Dealing with a micromanaging boss.
Just because your boss hangs over your shoulder on an important piece of work, it’s micromanagement. I’ll refer here to the Manager Tools exceptional definition of micromanagement:
[A micromanager is] a manager who – on every task, project or item – tells you what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and then watches you work, corrects you as you work, interrupts you to do the work herself, corrects it after you’ve done it and never believes you’ll be able to do it, even after you’ve done it right.
Micromanaging is short-term gain, long-term loss.
I don’t advocate micromanagement as a fundamental management style, I don’t think it’s the best way to get the best from your people. It’s inefficient and ineffective. Micromanaging is short-term gain, long-term loss. You get some productivity gain now, by stepping in and having the manager do the work now. But micromanaging allows for no employee growth. There’s no development taking place.
If micromanaging is an input, there’s no employee progression output.
-Flavio Martins, The Customer Service Management Coach
Micromanaging has its place.
Step back for a minute and look at the bigger picture. Think from the perspective of your boss. If his boss gives him a big, important project, he may micromanage on the biggest projects because the results of the project may be extremely critical to the organization. It’s ok for micromanaging to take place on some projects throughout the year.
But that doesn’t make you or your boss a micromanager when he is over-managing something of critical importance.
So if you feel you are being micromanaged, you’re probably not. Don’t make one instance a trend, don’t push back too hard, and do as you’re told. Hope it goes away.
What to do if your boss is a micromanager.
If micromanaging never stops, either put up with it, or get your resume ready. When micromanaging takes place day-to-day you have to either see the end of it or make an end of it. Be professional about it and look for other opportunities where you can best develop your skills and deliver results. Quitting your job may be a REALLY good thing.
If you’re a boss, don’t worry about micromanaging a couple of times a year. But if it’s taking place every day, on every project, and with every task, remember that it will ultimately take a toll on the effectiveness and progression of your team.