Every manager wants a flawless execution at the end of his team. And sometimes this urge goes to the level where it crosses the boundaries where a manager should basically refrain from getting involved unless actually needed.
It is an established management principle that responsibility and authority go hand in hand, which forms the base for delegation. It is inequitable to pass on the responsibility without its much needed counterpart- authority.
Delegation is an art, that every manager needs to learn. It requires the skill to balance the need to get work done on time and without errors but without violating the freedom of the employee. The repercussions of micromanagement are serious and worth consideration which is why it is stressed from time to time in all managerial trainings. Here are the top 5 highlights in my view:
1. Curbs loyalty
Continuous involvement in a subordinate’s work sends out the signal that you do not trust him with his capabilities and knowledge. This in turn leads to reduce the ownership of the tasks at the end of the employee and curbs the loyalty towards the team as well as the organisation.
2. Kills creativity
Creativity needs freedom to come out at its best. It cannot thrive in a restricted environment. While the world is moving towards innovative ideas, it is extremely important that creativity in any kind of job is maintained so as to always move towards better way of doing things.
3. Slays motivation
The excitement and energy to accomplish something is deflated when the manager wants to keep an eye on every small thing making the subordinate feel like a puppet in manager’s hands. The zeal to execute best comes with the trust and support of a manager who lets the employee take their daily battles with a fine balance of sparring as and when needed.
4. Hampers growth
Micromanagement creates an environment that overshadows the real skills of an employee that need nourishment and polishing. This hampers growth and on the contrary, pushes am employee further down his skill set. This poses a threat to the needed trajectory that every employee deserves for his time and efforts at workplace.
Important to add here, that it doesn’t impact growth at the end of the employee only, but also for the manager who keeps himself immersed in tasks that he should be actually delegating. This will take away the time and energy that he should be using for his own growth, in his own tasks.
5. Limits independence
A bird cannot have it’s best flight in a cage. That is how micromanagement limits the strength and capabilities of an employee. When an employee needs to stop at every little step for manager’s ‘go ahead’, it creates frustration when it reaches to a level that even the obvious decisions have to go through certain kind of approval. This is definitely not a good sign for a team to flourish and creates a spiteful environment at workplace.
Of course a manager needs to maintain control to a certain degree on his team but as stressed above, there has to be a fine balance in ensuring that the work is not impacted negatively as well as the employees still have the needed level of emancipation in their work. There may be few hiccups every now and then in terms of deliveries but in long term, refraining from micromanagement ensures a good relationship between manager and employee and helps both of them grow in their respective roles.
While a flower needs both sunshine and rain to bloom, any of it in excess is harmful.