Feeling micromanaged?  Start by asking yourself why.

Posted August 22, 2017 in Career Management, Communication

Those of us who’ve had the experience of being micromanaged know well how uncomfortable and demotivating this can be. It brings a feeling that we are not trusted to stay on top of our work, not trusted to get things done right and not trusted to make decisions.

While it’s often our first reaction to label the person doing the micromanaging as a ‘micromanager’, John Hastings, Director of Sales at Elavon, recently shared his perspective and experience on micromanagement and offers a different lens on where the problem may lie.

John suggests that if you feel that you’re being micromanaged, your first step should be to question WHY the micromanaging is occurring. Take a good hard look in the mirror and consider if there are gaps on your end that are driving the micromanagement. Consider if there are behaviours that you need to shift that will help close the gaps. You may discover, as he did, that the lack of trust you are feeling, and the micromanagement you are experiencing, is driven by a need for you to make some changes in how you approach your work.

Recognizing that “if you can be ‘bulletproof’ in effectively managing all that you are responsible for, there leaves no room for micromanaging”, here are some of the things that John found helpful in making progress against the gaps he identified:

Creating structure. Documenting and categorizing all work in a way that reflects urgency and importance. Reviewing and updating it regularly with his boss for alignment.

Distinguishing tasks and projects (longer, broader term work). Being sure to keep movement on the bigger, broader initiatives at times when there are immediate directives at play that can seem all-consuming.

Saying No. Recognizing that it’s not always best to say yes. Sometimes it’s better to say no, or say yes with an asterisk, noting what will be sacrificed to get this done. TWEET THIS

If you’re feeling micromanaged, take a moment to consider why and if there are gaps that you need to close.


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