In Section 1, we defined what micromanagement is and how to deal with it (Micromanagement). Let’s look at whether it’s beneficial to the team and business culture.
Section 2 – Is micromanagement beneficial or harmful?
Micromanagement, according to the Gartner Human Resources Glossary, is a pattern of manager activity characterized by excessive supervision and control of employees’ jobs and procedures, as well as a restricted delegation of duties or decisions to employees.
I recently came across several circumstances involving micromanagement when interacting with my colleagues and friends. I’ll go into more details –
A reputed consulting firm undergoes a transformation in which new management is brought on board. There are few changes in terms of working and reporting patterns as a result of this.
We’ll examine the situation from both a team and an individual perspective, as well as how it impacted the overall work culture.
Employees in the aforementioned case were never used to being micromanaged or being expected to ask approval for minor matters. Employees began to feel the heat as soon as the new management took over. Employees become disengaged, absenteeism, low morale, and efficiency suffered as a result of this. Owing to high attrition and lack of confidence in their employees, the company’s overall output suffered.
Employees, on the other hand, were losing trust and willingness to work. My good friend, who has over 10 years of experience, was unable to perform to his full potential because he was uncomfortable with the management style of working. Despite being a top performer in his career, this circumstance causes him to lose faith and be dissatisfied with his work. He considered resigning and seeking employment with another firm.
Do you believe this is the best course of action? Don’t you think a top performer, someone who has had a steady career path, would face a significant setback when asked to explain the leap or change? Isn’t it easier to discuss the situation with the upper management and give it a shot?
By integrating some of the suggestions mentioned in Section 1 (Micromanagement), he discussed the same with his reporting manager and upper management.
What happened over the next three months will undoubtedly inspire you to rise to the occasion and apply it in your professional life as well, whenever the opportunity occurs.
Well, the team and the current management’s strategy have undergone several significant changes. As a result, the team and the organization as a whole performed exceptionally well. My friend was also helped to get back in shape, and he demonstrated his exceptional abilities by leading the business to new heights. Employees welcomed the new management’s aspirations, and the new management adapted to the team’s working style.
It’s sometimes just a matter of luck, opportunity, and faith.
Let’s look at the positive effects of micromanagement now that we’ve covered the negative ones:
- Increases engagement (from top to bottom and vice versa) – since more engagement and participation means the team is less likely to lose sight of its goals and objectives.
- Better control – since the managers are more experienced, they can spot potential pitfalls or issues and address them appropriately.
- Assigning tasks – When you get to know your team and understand their strengths and weaknesses, delegating becomes easier.
- Boost their trust and speed up their work – Proper guidance and support will boost their confidence and speed up their work.
Is micromanagement needed and when can you micro-manage?
Well, it’s all about how well and where on the job it’s being implemented. It is based entirely on the situation and dynamics of the workforce.
In simple words, everything has its advantages and disadvantages, even micromanagement which is generally considered dreadful because of how it is implemented. It may not be necessary, but the implications may change if used properly and in must-have scenarios.
So, when can you micro-manage, below are some scenario’s that will give you better clarity:
- If you’ve got a pilot batch of employees or new joiners on a task.
- Incoherence, errors, and time and again missed deadlines occur, that’s when you need to step up and guide them.
- If no SOP’s or systems have been implemented.
- For handling technical tasks or smaller teams.
In short, the effect can be measured and checked as well as the result can be effective if the application of micromanagement is taken into account.
Accordingly to Steve Jobs, “It’s not worth hiring intelligent people and telling them what to do; we hire intelligent people to tell us what to do.”
Do any of the above scenarios sound familiar to you, if so what have you done about it. Have you discussed the problem with your team or upper management? How do you deal with it professionally and discreetly?
The message is clear – Micromanagement leads to attrition, low productivity, self-doubt in employees, poor employee experience, a lack of engagement or limited involvement, and above all, a misguided corporate. There is a thin line between a micromanager and a good leader. It’s therefore important to navigate carefully and tactfully through it. Employees should be given enough space – to work, have a say, and carry out their duties.
Test the suggestions and let us know how did they go. If you have any other suggestions or alternatives, please share them in the comments section below!!