There’s yet to be a person who has positive feelings when hearing the work micromanagement. Many studies have now proven that if you are the kind of manager who hovers and micromanages their team thinking it will be for the best, you are actually doing a lot more harm than good.
This is not to say there isn’t a reasonable time micromanaging is fine in short term situations like training new employees or increasing the performance of under-achieving employees. However, the impact of micromanaging in the long term can be truly damaging to any organisation.
Employees just don’t like to be micromanaged. It destroys autonomy, plummets employee morale, reduces productivity, creates stress and breaks down any form of trust between the employee and the employer.
A study done by the Indiana University Kelley School of Business even went as far as to show a correlation between early death and high-stress jobs mixed with the stress of micromanagement.
Simply put, there is nothing good that can come out of micromanagement but some managers don’t even realise they are falling into the trap. So how can you tell it might be time to give your employees the autonomy they deserve?
You’re never satisfied with what is produced
Even when your team members reach their targets you still expect more. If a project is done on time you still think it should have been done quicker or with fewer resources. This kind of reaction simply destroys employee morale.
Instead, when your team manages to reach their KPIs why not have a word of encouragement or some words of praise?
You want the task to be done your way
Each and every one of us has a different way of tackling a task and as long as the job is done and it’s done well, there is no need for extra input. There is no need to get frustrated when your team doesn't go about the task the way you told them to, or the way it was done before.
Instead, try to focus on the ‘what’ rather than the ‘how’ and give your team enough space to perform the task the way they think it’s best.
You want continuous updates
You even want to be cc’d on all emails. Sometimes these updates are so incessant that they even get in the way of the actual work which needs to be done. A good manager doesn’t need a daily report or a daily team meeting to measure productivity.
Instead, develop solid lines of communication. Also, make sure your employees know your door is always open in case there is a bottleneck you need to take care of.
You constantly want to know where your team members are
Flexibility breeds autonomy and increases productivity. Your employees are adults and you don’t need to know their whereabouts around the clock. For certain jobs, they don’t even need to be in the same office as you.
Instead, work on a policy that gives your team real flexibility and the option to work from home.
Letting go is hard. Many managers are worried that if their employees don’t perform then this will reflect badly on them. This might be true but micromanaging is simply not the answer. Probably one of the best ways to make sure your team works towards the same one common goal is to properly communicate your vision. If everyone knows how their bit of work fits into the puzzle there’s a better chance your team will work together towards that all-important business goal.