We’ve all had that boss, the helicopter of the office, looking over every shoulder. Do you have them in your mind’s eye? We’re willing to bet that even the memory of them is a bit annoying. That being said, we get it! When the buck stops with you, it can feel like your only option is to dictate and tighten the reigns. However, sometimes our natural reaction simply isn’t the right one.
Micromanaging Stifles Creativity and Inhibits Risk Taking
You don’t get anywhere in business without evolving or changing, and there is a certain amount of risk involved in that. Without purposeful evolution even the largest, most successful of businesses will go the way of Blockbuster -going down, clinging onto an antiquated product, service or business model.
When every decision is made, and every move is calculated, there is no room for creativity, or even a simple suggestion to improve a process. On a smaller scale, risk and trial and error is how we learn. We don’t grow without out a few lessons under our belt.
Autonomy and Accountability in Your Staff is a Competitive Advantage
If your goal is to be full time babysitter, then by all means continue. However, if your goal is to truly reap the benefits of your human capital by empowering them through accountability, then micromanaging has to stop.
It is vital for employees to understand how their individual contribution affects the big picture objectives of the company. Instilling that sense of responsibility and pride will create drive in employees, leading to increased discretionary effort. If every process and decision is spoon (or force) fed to them, they have no stake in the outcome of their work, and that does not an engaged employee make.
Micromanaging Creates Bottlenecks
At Action Card, we kind of revel in the seeking out and destroying of bottlenecks. Everyone knows who or what they are, but they just kind of have to deal with it because the bottleneck is usually a micromanaging higher-up or it’s a process that a micromanaging higher-up has implemented.
Micromanagers tend to want to have final approval on everything, they want to be cc’d on every email and it might just best if they listen in on all client calls as well. Besides the fact that those things are usually pretty unnecessary, no one person can be everywhere at all times, so work backs up until they can get to it… and you have a bottleneck.
It Just Doesn’t Work
So, do you have that micromanager boss in mind? Odds are you quit, or you’re going to. You’ve probably heard it a hundred times, “People don’t quit jobs, they quit managers.” You’ve heard it a hundred times because it’s true!
Accountemps estimated in a study that about 60% of employees work for a micromanager, and of those who felt they’d been micromanaged, 68% said it decreased their morale, while 55% said it hurt their productivity. Simply put, micromanagement is not an effective leadership style.
Now, It’s Totally Unnecessary
If for no other reason, micromanaging should cease simply because it is 100%, completely unnecessary. With today’s project and workflow management technologies, hover management makes no sense, because the tech acts as the eyes and ears of your business.
When accountability and solid communication are a built-in piece of your workflow, there is simply nothing to micromanage. Aside from being an annoying and ineffective management practice, micromanagement has become another of one those archaic business practices that we often talk about here at Action Card. The right kind of workflow management empowers managers to ditch the helicopter and support their team..