/ˈmʌɪkrəʊmanɪdʒ/ – control every part, however small, of (an enterprise or activity)
In organisations where people feel that they are being micromanaged, not trusted or given autonomy over their work, the vibrational elements of their emotions tend to give off negative vibes. Similar to that feeling when you walk into a room and you could cut the air with a knife because two people have been arguing. You get this automatic feeling that you don’t want to be there.
In my most recent book “The Trouble with Trauma”, I talk about how emotions vibrate. In a workplace, you can notice when you walk into a space that it feels as if the energy is low and quite heavy. Often people in these workplace’s, will state that they feel quite despondent. They don’t really have a sense of autonomy over what they are doing, nor do they feel like they are trusted to get on with the job.
This is where micromanagement becomes a big part of the problem.
Micromanagement tends to occur because people become overly controlling about things that they want to have happen in the workplace. Usually individuals feel they’re being let down by other employees, they are not being supported and this can lead to feelings of frustration and ultimately, tighter controls. This can occur for a whole range of reasons, but some people naturally try to cope with daily stressors by micromanaging their people.
However, when we take control of the outcomes, impose on other people and go over the top of them to make sure they are doing everything right, they tend to just stop doing anything. Many times, in trying to manage our own anxiety about getting it right, we imply a lack of trust in the person that we delegated the task to.
This causes a much bigger problem in the workplace!
It is about having a better awareness point. If you can see that you’re getting frustrated and starting to feel as if the work you are assigning is not being completed efficiently, you need to stop and reset. Think about your communication and what it is that is not getting through correctly.
People may feel that what they are doing is not good enough or they are letting people down. But by the same token, they may not truly understand what is required of them. Sometimes people don’t complete things because they don’t feel that they have enough clarity to deliver what is required. This is especially true if they have received negative feedback from previously delegated tasks.
You may need to change the communication pathway, return to the beginning or completely reset. Sometimes this may require an independent third party. All they may need to do is hear what both sides are saying and understanding the communication variation. It is all about perception and sometimes we need to stop and start from the beginning again to work out what the process is.
Understanding where the communication is breaking down, and learning how to structure it so that both parties are on the same page, is what is needed to rebuild trust.
If you’re finding yourself getting frustrated with other workers, you may truly benefit from a third party or internal coach within your organisation. It is a good place to start for someone independent to listen, see both sides, help reset and make a difference. Make sure that you choose someone with great communication and reasoning skills as it can be challenging to help people to see that the issue is about the process, not the person.