How to Take Off Your Micro Manager Hat – The Positive Side of Trusting Your Employees

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Micro-managing may seem like a good idea at first for a variety of reasons:

  • You are ensuring that your employees are managing project details correctly.

  • You take on the tasks that are critical, instead of giving them to others, to make sure they are done correctly.

  • When you find a mistake in an employee’s work, you take the task on yourself so the results meet your standards.

  • You make sure your team members talk to you before they make decisions.

By doing this, you keep control over what your team is doing and the results they produce. For many managers, that sounds like an ideal world. For others, this is not a fun way to deal with at work, perhaps continued education will help with your goals.

Micro Manager Hat

What is the reality of micro-managing? You are stressed out trying to stay on top of details. You have employees who cannot make decisions without your advice. They have to come to you for everything. You have no time to lead. Your employees stop communicating unless necessary for business. You feel more like a baby sitter than a manager. For any manager, that should sound like a situation to avoid.

Micro-managed employees feel stifled. They have no input into their work lives. They shut down and lose their ability to be innovative. Their managers never get to see exactly what they are really capable of. By managing at the detail level, managers are actually creating employees who need to be micro-managed. That is the exact opposite of a self-sufficient employee.

So, How Do You Take Off Your Micro-Manager Hat?

  • Identify areas of concern you have. Why don’t you trust the people working for you? For many managers, it is a fear of losing control. It is a fear that the result will not be perfect. Knowing the underlying issue allows you to face it.

  • Hire the right people. A good team with the skill set necessary to get the job done is essential. That way, when you delegate a task, you know the person doing it has the skills to do it.

  • Learn how to delegate. This may be the hardest thing to do. Start with a single task and a competent employee. Outside of periodic updates, let the employee handle the task start to finish. With the first, the next will be easier.

  • Let go of the idea of a perfect solution. Perfectionism is a big reason for micro-managing. Realize that there are several solutions to a given problem. Driving everyone nuts trying to find a perfect one is counterproductive and takes too much time.

  • Create an effective team dynamic. Your team should communicate with each other. They should exchange ideas without you being in the middle of things. Without micro-managing, that can happen.

It will take time to drop your micro-managing habits. For most, the habits have become so ingrained that changing them will become a challenge. But, the effort will be worth it.

Changes When You Stop Micro-managing?

  • You will see your team making decisions without you. That is frightening to some managers. But, you will find the decisions they make, for the most part, are as good as the ones that you make. And it empowers them further.

  • You can trust them to handle projects from start to finish. You will want periodic updates. But, leaving the details to your team members will take pressure from you and give them a chance to shine.

  • You will have a team of whom you can be proud. You will see your team’s productivity soar when you give them the power to do their job. Plus, the results will be astounding.

  • You will have a team that will make mistakes. Mistakes are normal. People learn from the mistakes they make. If someone is making too many mistakes, he or she may not be a good fit for their current job. That is a good thing to know.

  • You will have a team that communicates. Your team, working together, can create better, more effective solutions. With communication, problems get solved faster and the works gets done better.

  • You will have a team that innovates and creates. New ideas come out of teams that work in a dynamic positive atmosphere. The innovations they come up with can change the way you do business.

The result will be something to be proud. Micro-managing is something that many managers slip into without thinking about it. Getting out of that mode will take thought and action.

The positive side of trusting your employees is that you can become the leader that you should be. You will be a boss that your employees trust and enjoy working for. You will empower your team. You will empower yourself at the same time. All it takes is removing the micro-managing hat.

When are you taking off your hat?