Being a business owner is no easy position.
You have to manage a myriad of different tasks on a daily basis and make sure everyone is doing their job properly. However, there is a fine line between “managing” and “micromanaging,” and the latter is a dangerous path to walk down. People who like to be in control can easily fall into the trap of managing every move of their employees and this will only bring their company down. Read on to learn what micromanagement actually means, why it is a destructive business practice, and how it affects your company on several levels.
What is micromanagement?
Micromanagement is defined as a management style where the manager supervises their employees’ work excessively. Besides close observation, they try to control everything, often meddle into employees’ work even when it’s properly done, and get caught up in minuscule details. Micromanagers have problems letting go of responsibilities and leaving them to others, so they often take away these responsibilities from employees for no good reason and complete tasks themselves. This may not seem like a serious issue at first. In fact, micromanagement may seem to work effectively in the short term. However, when looking at the long-term results, needless to say, it has many negative consequences. Micromanagement is not only detrimental to your company and employees but it is actually detrimental to you as well. Here’s how.
Micromanagement hinders productivity
As a manager, you probably have a lot on your plate, with limited time. However, focusing your attention on micromanagement and devoting your time and energy to menial details is less than productive when you have a busy schedule. What happens is constantly checking up on your employees leaves you little time to actually deal with important tasks. Proper time management is key for success, and knowing what deserves your time is paramount. But this is not the only way micromanagement stands in the way of productivity. It actually makes your employees less productive as well by killing their morale and generating negative feelings.
You lose control
You might think that overseeing everything that happens within your business can only mean that you have better control of your company. However, too much micromanagement will actually have the opposite effect. While you are busy focusing on unimportant things, you will fail to see the big picture and it will be easy for control to slip out of your hands. Remember that, as long as your employees are delivering satisfactory results, there is no reason for you to scrutinize their every move and criticize their approach.
It stresses your employees out
It is not difficult to imagine why employees feel negative about this management style. When you’re constantly going back and making corrections to an employee’s work, they will feel frustrated. Incessant lingering and checking up on what employees are doing will also make them feel stressed and less positive about their workplace. Needless to say, generating stress in the workplace is not a great strategy. Stress can be a cause of a slew of mental health issues. Your employees will not only be at risk of burnout, which will further hurt their productivity and your business, but even their physical health may suffer, which will lead to more sick days off. It is thus clear why you should steer clear of micromanaging employees.
Micromanagement destroys trust and loyalty
Only a company that nurtures trust and loyalty from the side of its employees has the potential to grow in a steady manner. However, if you keep supervising your employees’ every move, they are more than likely to feel like you don’t trust them and they, too, will lose their trust in you. When they feel like you don’t have trust in their skills, their self-esteem will suffer and so will the quality of their work. Not only will their productivity drop, but so will their loyalty to your company. Obviously, this has several negative implications for the future of your company. Employees will not put up with micromanagement for long and there is a possibility that they will simply leave your company. You don’t want to risk a high turnover rate by not being able to let some of the control go.
It limits employees’ development
Another huge drawback of micromanagement is that it can greatly limit your employees’ potential. When they get used to you overseeing everything they do, they will feel like they’re losing their autonomy. This will kill their motivation to strive to do better and seriously stunt their growth. Your employees need to have a healthy amount of autonomy in the tasks they do so that they don’t become dependent on you. If this has already happened and you are unable to place your trust in them, then turning this situation around and encouraging them to grow would be the solution. Instead of running in place, give them the opportunity to develop their confidence and skills by looking into Master Mindset coaching. Employees who can work independently without you having to micromanage them will take your company’s productivity to the next level.
It’ll burn you out
Finally, as you already know, micromanagement does not only hurt your employees. It’s actually a practice that will have a negative effect on you as well. Let’s face it: trying to keep everything under your own control is exhausting. You overburden yourself with tasks that are not your responsibility and you’ll overwork yourself, risking burnout. What you need to consider is that burnout will not only affect your work life, but your personal life as well, and even your health. In addition, micromanagement can seriously limit your own and your company’s growth potential. Focusing on small details will not allow your creativity to flourish and drive the company forward. You simply cannot micromanage everything, which means your company’s growth will be limited by your capacities.
If you are guilty of micromanaging every step your employees take, perhaps it’s time to rethink this strategy. Micromanagement affects your employees, your company, and you negatively, so it’s a good idea to work on letting go of control from time to time.