As the owner of a successful manufacturing business, you probably have a tendency to make sure that every little detail across various projects is correct—and rightfully so; ultimately the health of your company falls on your shoulders, and if things end up going wrong, it’s going to come back to you. However, when the focus becomes so narrow that you are micromanaging projects and employees, your attention to detail can actually become a problem.
Signs You’re a Micromanager
Most leaders don’t realize (or accept) that they are micromanagers, which is understandable due to the negative connection that surrounds the word. However, the employees that you manage can easily tell if you are one. Here are the signs that you may be micromanaging your delegates:
* You need to know the little details of every project and be “in the loop.” If you don’t know the status of a project at that minute, you start to get anxious. You may also request numerous progress reports throughout the duration of the process.
* You fail to delegate tasks. Whether it’s because you believe that you can perform them better or you want to ensure they get done “the right way”, you decide to just get things done yourself as opposed to having others complete the tasks for you.
* When you do delegate tasks, you dictate how they are to be done. Despite the fact that there may be multiple ways of accomplishing something, you want them done in the way that you would do it.
How Micromanaging Will Kill Your Business
If you haven’t acknowledged and accepted the fact that you’re a micromanager, it’s probably going to come back and bite you in the end. Leaders with that management style are often never (or hardly ever) satisfied with the results of their team no matter what. And although you think your management style is just ensuring that things are done correctly, micromanaging can be incredibly damaging to many aspects of your business, including the confidence level of your team members.
First of all, the people you are managing are the first ones affected by your managerial ways. Micromanaging stunts worker growth and development and makes employees scared to think outside of the box. One of your delegates might have a great idea to make your manufacturing plant more efficient, but he or she may be scared to bring that idea to the table because they think you’re just going to reject it.
Additionally, micromanaging your employees affects their morale–and not in a good way. Research has shown that a micro management style discourages employees from presenting new ideas and harnessing their creativity. Also, very few employees enjoy being micromanaged and will be less engaged at work (and probably looking for a new job when they’re not working). This, in turn, leads to higher turnover rates, and costs the company money.
How to Fix It
Before you even think about fixing your micromanagement problem, there is one initial hurdle you must overcome: accepting the fact that you are a micromanager. Whether it’s looking at the indicators above or being told by your employees that you are one, the first step is acceptance.
Once that happens, it’s important to keep an open mind; changing your management style is not going to happen overnight. You should ask for help from your team and ask them to let you know when you seem to be micro-analyzing a project. Allow yourself to delegate more tasks and, above all, put trust in the people you are managing. Don’t complete the task before they have a chance to even start on it. You are their manager for a reason! Make everything a learning process and help them develop as an employee. This will be beneficial not only for you and them, but the company as a whole as well.