Weighing up the pros and cons of micromanagement (guest article)

The term ‘micromanaging’ can often be associated with a manager who is overbearing and unnecessarily pedantic – but is this always the case? We don’t think so! When done right, micromanagement can bring a number of positives into the way you work with your team, and there’s no reason why it can’t be a positive thing.

Of course, management practices work differently for everyone, and it very much depends on the way you work – and, not to mention, the way your team work too. To help you figure out the best way to manage your staff, we’re going to take a look at a few of the pros and cons of micromanagement.

PROS:

Enhances organisational skills

One of the benefits of micromanaging a team is how much it’ll improve your organisation skills. Let’s face it – if you’re going to micromanage a team of people, you have to be organised. It would be impossible to keep on top of all the work if you weren’t! So, by closely managing your team of staff, you’ll develop the ability to effectively organise the work of your employees as well as your own. In other words, micromanagement forces you to be organised.

Boosts productivity

Despite some of the negative comments around micromanagement and productivity, when done right it’s possible that you will actually see an increase in productivity. By closely monitoring the work of your employees, you’re likely to pick up on any errors and mishaps before they snowball into a bigger problem. With this in mind, when you micromanage a team of people you can reduce the likelihood of human error. As a result of this, you’re likely to see an increase in productivity.

Encourages communication

One of the benefits of micromanaging a team is that it’s easier to openly communicate with each other. Working extremely closely with your team can help them feel comfortable talking to you and encourage open communication. A manager who is frequently unavailable or too busy to talk to their team will discourage them from speaking up – that’s not something you have to worry about when micromanaging.

Here at Tempest Designs, we work with people located all over the world and encourage open communication. Without it, it’d be extremely hard to work together – especially as we’re working in different countries – so we really do see the importance of open communication.

Now that we’ve taken a look at the benefits of micromanaging, let’s explore the other end of the spectrum and look at the downsides.

CONS:

Increased workload

When you make the decision to micromanage your team, you’ll inevitably increase your workload. You’ll have to dedicate more time to meeting your employees and reviewing their work, not to mention completing other tasks you still have to do as part of your role. This can take up quite a lot of your valuable time, which could be better spent elsewhere. You need to weigh up the benefits of micromanaging with how much time you’ll need to invest – is it really worth it? Only you know the answer.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that you’ll be taking time away from your employees and preventing their work from getting done as quickly as it could. While it might seem productive to check their work regularly to avoid mistakes, it can sometimes be more efficient to let them complete the task at hand in one go.

Lack of trust

It’s not unusual for an employee to develop a lack of trust towards their own work when they’re being micromanaged. It can be detrimental to their confidence and could actually have a negative impact on the quality of their work. If an employee feels like you don’t trust their ability to complete tasks on their own, or think that you don’t value the quality of their work, they’ll never develop the confidence they need to become decisive, strong-minded and dedicated employees.

High staff turnover

As a result of the lack of trust, employees can start to feel resentful toward their managers. Unfortunately, this can lead to staff leaving the company, which can be pretty bad for business for a number of reasons. When you have a high turnover of staff, you’ll be forking out money to hire and vet new employees, and will have to invest time interviewing and training new staff for the job. We know you’ve probably got better things to be doing with your time, so think carefully about the impact that micromanagement can have on your team.

It’s clear that micromanagement is a tool that divides the business world, and rightly so. Being micromanaged can sometimes be difficult for an employee, especially if they’re not used to being managed this way. However, it can be a useful tool for a new employee who lacks the experience and understanding of the business. It really does depend on the situation! Ultimately, it comes down to weighing up the pros and cons and questioning whether micromanagement is the right fit for you and your team.

tempestdesigns

This guest article was written by Sarah Tempest, chief designer at Tempest Designs, a leading trade supplier of fashion jewellery in Bridgend, UK. 

 

To find out more about being a guest writer for The Avid Doer, please visit this page.