This last weekend, my daughter wanted to hangout with a friend of hers who she hadn’t seen for a couple of months. I have always been a big advocate of her socializing with friends as it sets her up for success to interact with girls in her age group.
This time, she had to get caught up on two days of homework that she missed, because she was out sick. Moreover, she was set to attend a 4- hour dress rehearsal for her upcoming play. She made a deal with me and my husband so that she could spend some time with her good friend, but the one thing I learned about me in this instance is that I might have some of what it takes to be a micro-manager.
Webster’s dictionary defines a micro-manager as, “to manage especially with excessive control or attention to details.”
While I have never really been a micro-manager at work, I admit that I do micro-manage my children’s social life. Often, I require my daughter, especially, to text me frequently when she changes locations throughout the day. This recent hangout was no exception. About half way through her hangout, I started to ponder whether I was even allowing her to be fully present for her friend and enjoy the experience.
This made me think about how managers who micro-manage people might “show up” in the workplace. They are often controlling and insecure. They want to know and have a hand in everything that their team members are doing. They suffocate their people as they hawk over them.
Do we all have a little bit of micromanager in us?
Even though my desire to control things is real, it doesn’t show up in a detrimental way at work. I am grateful for that.
Micromanagers probably don’t realize the impact their behaviors have on their teams. I have heard employees complain about increased anxiety, doubt, inability to sleep, and sometimes, it impacts their relationships.
In my case, I decided to loosen up with my daughter and let her grow up. I can’t control her forever. Just like my example, managers who micromanage their people don’t allow them to be fully present to their customers, coworkers and teams. They squelch their ability to grow and learn.
My hope for you is that you will recognize whether you have these traits and bury them. You and your team members will benefit for years to come
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