5 Strategies to Curb Your Tendency to Micromanage


While micromanagers may have the best intentions at heart and want their team to produce quality work, they often do not even realize that monitoring every single employee along every single step of the way is highly counterproductive. Simply put, their micromanaging ways can and do lead to a toxic workplace – and we hardly need telling how devastating a toxic workplace can be.

See Also: How to Motivate Without Micromanaging

Nobody likes working for a micromanaging boss, and employees will often leave their jobs when it gets too much. So, if you’ve recently discovered you’re a micromanager yourself and would like to avoid employee turnover as well as change your ways, you might want to consider putting these five strategies to good use.

1. Consider the Consequences

Take a moment to consider how your tendency to micromanage can affect the work environment: the more you hover over them and monitor their every single move, the more frustrated, disengaged and demotivated they become. Workplace relationships are at stake, too: you run the risk of damaging employees and coworkers’ trust in you and even their own self-confidence. Once these relationships are damaged, it can be incredibly difficult to come back from.

Taking all of these into account can help you refrain from micromanaging in future, and it will give you the opportunity to rebuild and develop the broken relationships with your team.

2. Talk to Your Team

presenting to team

Make sure that you have a clear, thought-out plan and that you communicate a project’s priorities with your team from the very start. Including them in this very important step can help you avoid micromanaging them later on as they will have a clear idea of what is expected of them. Also, ask them to keep you in the loop – this will deflect the urge to hover over them every step of the day.

3. Match Employees to the Work

When you’re confident that your employees can carry out the tasks you’ve assigned them with, you won’t feel the constant urge to check up on them and see how everything’s coming along. That’s why it’s important that you hire people who can do their jobs as effectively as possible with little monitoring and that you match qualified and skilled employees to the work in order to ensure high performance.

4. Provide Ongoing Learning and Development

Business meeting

With the workplace constantly evolving and growing, and with the onslaught of new technological advancements, our work becomes all the more challenging each and every day. New systems are put in place and new procedures are adopted all the time, and this can overwhelm employees. It is, therefore, crucial that employees whose skills are lagging behind are provided with the appropriate training required to keep up pace.

5. Reflect on Your Behavior

Oftentimes, our poor behavior can indicate toward an underlying issue- some sort of insecurity. Perhaps you feel that an employee’s work that has been poorly produced will reflect badly on you. Meanwhile, deep-seeded psychological issues and even problems at home can all influence the tendency to micromanage. Whatever the case, it’s best that these issues are addressed both for the benefit of the workplace and its employees, as well as your own.

See Also: How to Know the Difference Between Effective Management and Micromanagement

Can you think of any other strategies that could be employed to curb your tendency to micromanage? Share your tips and tricks with us in the comments section below!

Government Executive
Harvard Business Review