Is Micromanagement Really All That Bad?

"I hate my micromanaging boss!" is a common complaint I hear from friends. Many people view micromanagers as unnecessary time wasters. They're eager to take control of every tiny aspect of a subordinate's work life which makes actually doing any work an unpleasant and dragged out affair. But one business veteran believes micromanagement isn't as bad as everybody thinks.

A woman being micromanaged and hating it image from Shutterstock

Jack Welch is the former CEO of General Electric and the founder of the Jack Welch Management Institute. He said in a blog post on Pulse that not all micromanagement styles are bad. Welch doesn't support overbearing bosses that micromanage every task because they have nothing better to do or don't trust their employees.

But micromanagement is effective when you're guiding a competent employee through something they are not experienced with, but know when to pull back and let them do their jobs:

"As a manager, you have to take what I call the 'accordion approach'. Get very close to your people and their work when they need you — that is, when your help matters — and pull back when you’re extraneous.   "… Ultimately, knowing how and when to micromanage comes down to engagement. If you really know your people and their skills — as you should — and you’re in their skin about their passions and concerns — as you should be — you will know when to “squeeze the accordion” and draw close."

So don't take a blanket approach to micromanaging. Learn to exercise it carefully and thoughtfully as a manager can result in developing deeper engagement with your workers.

[Via LinkedIn Pulse]


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