I have talked to many people who have left or hate their job because the feel their supervisor is a micro manager. On the flipside I have many leaders who hate the fact that they are viewed to have the characteristic as a micro manager. However, for the most part people who are seen as micro managers have good intentions just the as the people who come to work for them.
This is quite the organizational paradox.
Right now I want help you with the biggest challenge in understanding (and unwinding) this paradox is to recognize there is not a common definition of micro manager.
*You see it looks different to the person who is the manager because he/she understands his/hers intentions and may not understand the unintended consequences of their actions
*At the other side of the spectrum it looks different to the employees because at different stages in the professional development (and at different levels of confidence) employees need different levels of directions.
You as the leader must recognize the challenges you will have as a leader. I will help you to improve your skill set with some specifics.
Build a mutual agreement of success
This has the starting point. Do your employees understand what success completions of their tasks looks like? And more importantly do they know. Cannot expect them to perform and complete a task they do not know how to complete.
Train your people the Right way!
I cannot stress to you enough how many times people as leaders tell me they will not teach their team everything they know for job security sakes. What croc of bull! You should train your people to advance and to want your job…that’s the way I learned in leadership. Besides it will make your job easier and possibly advance you to the next level…we got to see the big picture. Training will build trust in your people…knowledge will build confidence. And training should be ongoing.
Focus on what and not how
One of the biggest stumbling blocks for most leaders is that you are often asking people to do things you already know how to do well. As a leader we think that success is not about the end result, but about doing it your way or the highway. It can all be so simple when you can keep the focus on the successful completion of the task; it prevents you from having to step in to often to “Help” along with being view as a micro manager. Trust your training and do it often and you will not have to micro manage.
Remember it isn’t your job
It’s their job not yours! Remember that. You grew by trying new things and making an occasional error. Your staff will make errors…help them to learn from them and coach them at that present time to help them grow. Stop robbing them of a chance to advance. Yeah, Yeah ok best practices and so forth. But sharing your best practices is rarely seen by employees as that but as micro management. Do these steps above and then, let them do it. Trust the training!
Ask them what they need from you
I often ask my employees how I can help them each day. People have different needs of supports and you have to understand that everyone is wired differently. Sometimes you may have to adjust their expectations a little or else they will feel overwhelmed and helpless.
If you let your people know that you are not a micro manager and want to help them grow. The lines of communication will be a lot better and the will understand your intentions. It is all about how you present yourself to you team. Be a Great coach and keeping coaching and your team will grow.