3 Ways Micromanagement Kills Your Productivity at Work, and How to Stop It

Micromanagement prevents employees from reaching their full potentials at work. In trying to control every detail about how workers perform their duties, managers or employees kill their productivity.

In this article, we will discuss the impact of micromanagement at work and how to stop it.

What Is Micromanagement?

Two Colleagues Working

Micromanagement refers to a show of unrelenting dominance at the workplace, usually by a boss over their subordinates. It’s a problem that has led to the loss of employee potential, creativity, and confidence. In extreme cases, it breeds distrust amongst colleagues.

Although micromanagement in its entirety isn’t a bad leadership style, it becomes a problem when leaders find it difficult to give their employees some freedom at work.

How Micromanagement Affects Employees’ Productivity

Group Meeting at Work

Micromanagers make it very difficult for you to demonstrate creativity on the job. They are always hanging over your shoulders, barking last-minute additions to a project that is already 80 percent complete. This could make employees behave in certain ways, such as being irrational, depressed, and demoralized.

This style of management negatively impacts employees’ output, the quality of their services, and their general wellbeing. Micromanagement affects employee productivity in the following ways.


1. Frustration at Work

Being supervised at work isn’t a problem. But when the supervision is overboard, you begin to question your competence. You aren’t allowed to execute basic tasks because your superior feels that you can’t perform them successfully on your own.

The lack of confidence in your skills by your boss or manager makes you feel frustrated and stressed out. This affects your work output and relegates you to a floater with no real value at the workplace.

2. Decreased Productivity

That feeling of gloom and doom that envelops you right before heading out of the house for the workplace is oftentimes caused by micromanagers.

When you suddenly begin to feel like you can’t get anything done correctly at work, a decrease in productivity is already setting in. Harboring negative feelings causes a lot of harm to you at the workplace and limits your zeal to get work done on time.

Related: Bad Habits That Kill Productivity and Ways to Solve These Issues

3. Stifles Creativity and Damages Workplace Trust

In the business world today, you either innovate or die. However, innovation doesn’t strive in an environment that stifles creativity. When this happens, the result is a company culture that encourages distrust among employees.

For creativity to thrive, you must first feel trusted with the role being delegated to you. But when you are micromanaged, this sense of trust is broken. You may not feel the need to be loyal to your organization anymore.

An important tool that helps in this regard is the Teramind. It ensures that employees’ activities are monitored more discreetly without being in their faces.

4 Effective Tips to Stop Micromanaging Employees

Team Collaboration at Work

It’s rare to find employees who enjoy micromanagers. Having a boss who looms over you, inspecting and criticizing every minor detail of a project, is demotivating. You start to question whether they trust your judgment, skills, and expertise.

Micromanagement has a serious impact on employee engagement. However, if you want to avoid these consequences, here are tips you can leverage to stop or minimize micromanaging your employees.

1. Delegate Tasks

Know what to delegate, how to delegate, and when to delegate. When the process of hiring is on, make sure you get the most experienced hands-on board. This would help long-term in ensuring that delegation isn’t a regrettable affair for you and your team.

Approach work activities as a group or collective endeavor, where delegating responsibilities according to the strengths and weaknesses of the team is of the utmost importance.

Delegating tasks isn’t a sign of incompetence. Rather, it shows a certain level of trust and confidence in the team hired to do the job. Did you know that CEOs that delegate are usually very successful? Delegation allows you to focus on other pressing issues.

2. Embrace the SMART Goal Approach

The SMART goal approach helps you set clear objectives for the team by highlighting the feasibility of each variable of your goal. The clearer you are about the objectives of assigned projects, the more you are likely to record positive results.

Related: What Is a Smart Goal Plan and How Can You Achieve It?

3. Welcome Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism can be obtained in the form of feedback from your colleagues at the workplace. Receiving feedback doesn’t mean you have relinquished control of the leadership. Instead, it shows that you are flexible and open to making corrections where shortcomings are observed.

Leaders who are guilty of micromanaging are usually oblivious to it at first. They think that they are busy getting the job done as they are supposed to. Listen to what’s being said about your leadership style. If there’s no room for open conversations, adopt the suggestion box system, where anonymous entries can be made. It goes a long way in fostering better team management, boosting morale, and neutralizing micromanagement.

4. Be Intentional

Your leadership style should be intentional and consistent. You have to lead from the front. In doing this, ensure that an established communication channel is built.

Setting up regular check-ins with your colleagues is another intentional way of preventing micromanagement. This will ensure that feedback can be gotten from those entrusted to perform the functions delegated to them.

Trust in Your Employees’ Competence

Being precise and strategic with your goals at the workplace should serve as a form of guidance for your employees to follow. Don’t be so stiff and rigid that you are constantly breathing down the necks of your staff. Rather, encourage them to do their work to the best of their ability. That way, they can perform their duties in the best ways possible.

While micromanaging cannot be eliminated at the workplace, it should be understood that it offers no immediate or direct benefits to workplace productivity. If you don’t trust that your team members have what it takes to do the job, why are you still working with them?

A man reading a document.
The 5 Best Performance Management Software

Employee performance evaluation can be a challenging experience for employers. Here are some digital solutions to ease the process.

Read Next

About The Author

Leave a Comment