Every organization and managerial personality requires a different set of tactics to motivate and supervise employees. Many management theories prefer managers to allow their workers the support and structure necessary to produce their work autonomously. Proponents of these schools of management caution against micromanagement, the habit of some managers to interfere unnecessarily in their workers’ activities. Where managerial functions cross the line and become micromanagement usually depends upon the needs and staff with which a manager works.
Micromanagement in Practice
In the broadest sense, micromanagement is the practice of managerial staff paying strict attention to small level details of a job, rather than allowing staff to complete their tasks as they see fit and managing the results of their work. Often, micromanagement sets standards and practices for staff based upon a manager’s personal preferences, rather than for the good of the employee or the corporation itself. Micromanagement is often associated with a dictatorial management style, in which employees’ ideas aren’t taken into consideration and nearly all aspects of the position are controlled by a manager’s decisions.
Impact on Morale and Causes of Micromanagement
Micromanagement often leads to morale problems among staff. Many employees feel as if a micromanaging boss doesn’t respect their abilities or judgment, while other staff members resent the lack of autonomy that comes with an overbearing manager. Management experts cite several reasons that bosses resort to micromanagement tactics, including lack of trust in staff’s abilities, a manager’s feeling that he could perform his staff’s jobs better than they do or a lack of understanding that a manager’s ideal role in an organization is to motivate workers, not produce traditional work.
Examples of Micromanagement
Micromanagement takes many forms and depends upon the specifics of the workplace. It can be as simple as requiring workers to keep their workspace and tools organized by a system dictated by a manager or as fundamental as a manager who constantly checks in on employees and instructs them how to do each step in a larger task. Many employees refer to micromanagement as “meddling” or “lording over” workers by a supervisor.
The Case for Micromanagement
Some management experts cite the rise of hands-off supervisors as problematic for organizational structures and urge supervisors to put more time in micromanaging their employees. Rather than dictating the processes in a task, however, managers should focus on giving workers weekly feedback on the five pillars of management: dictating expectations, measuring goals, evaluations of employees’ performance, feedback about employee performance and an equitable system of rewards to performers. Instead of concentrating on micro-level performance details, managers should focus on small, continual evaluations of workers’ performance.
- Photo Credit Patrick Ryan/Lifesize/Getty Images
The Abuse of Micromanagement in the Workplace & Job Performance
When a manager takes his normal responsibilities of oversight and collaboration to an extreme, focusing on the minute details of his subordinates&rsquo;...
What Does Micro Level Mean?
The term "micro level" as used in marketing refers to a close study of an individual competing product, as when Protor &...
Dealing With Lack of Motivation
When your to-do list keeps growing, it could be a sign that lack of motivation is preventing you from getting things done....
How to Handle Micromanaging Boss
You know how to do your job, but your boss insists on overseeing every little detail, from reviewing your emails before you...
How to Be a Model Employee
Whether they think they are being seen or not, employees are being observed by employers, who are always conscious of which employees...
Cultural Influences on Leadership
How a culture defines good leadership has been at the center of many business and political debates spanning the course of the...
Supervisor Attitude & Workplace Performance
While many factors influence workplace performance, among the more significant elements are the attitude and behavior of supervisors. The behavior of the...
The Negative Effects of Micromanagement
Micromanagement is a style of organizational leadership that involves direct and sustained supervision of employees by management teams. Micromanagement is considered to...
The Responsibilities of Managers
Companies and organizations require effective management to ensure smooth operation, achievement of goals and overall success of the entity. All types of...