How do you know if you’ve hired the wrong people?  

You need to micromanage their every move.

How do you know if you’re just a micromanager?

You micromanage every person, project, and task within your grasp regardless of competence – yours or theirs.

Why over-management is overkill

This might not come as a surprise, but no one likes to be micromanaged. Especially people who like to think and do. Thinkers and doers are particularly offended by constant scrutiny and limitations on their ability to do their jobs effectively.

If a leader truly wants to manage every detail in the organization, then he/she should only hire “yes” people. You know, the kind of employees who are happy only doing what they’re told and not thinking too much. These folks will gladly trade hours for a paycheck and meet the minimum expectations of the job. As such, they can tolerate constantly being told what to do and how to do it.

Leading does not equal babysitting

A leader who doesn’t want to deal with this level of detail, and would rather take on higher level issues and responsibilities needs to hire independent thinkers— people who like to do research, come up with new ideas, and then put them into practice. But this strategy comes with a warning:

If you hire independent thinkers and enthusiastic doers and then prevent them from taking initiative, you’re running the very immediate risk of them leaving.

We can’t be experts in everything

Unless you’ve got a one-person company, you’re hiring additional people to think and do. You should be hiring competent people you can trust to do their jobs exceptionally well.

They should bring expertise that compliments currently existing skills and knowledge in the company. And they should be looked upon with great enthusiasm for the fresh perspective they bring and their willingness to jump in and do these new jobs with their fiery passion.

Business owners have a lot of things to think about on a daily basis, and being an expert in one or more disciplines within the company will depend on the size of the organization.

If you are a one or two person company, you’re probably an expert in most areas. But if you’re part of a larger organization, you don’t need to be the expert on everything. That’s what the team is for.

As a leader, it’s your responsibility to set the vision and ensure the company stays on target. To accomplish your goals, you’ll need to hire competent people who believe in your company and your mission. But it doesn’t end there. You must also allow your team to take ownership of their new roles, and let them help you determine the best path for turning your vision into a reality. 

Take the test

When you hire people to manage specific areas of your organization, you should be looking at them as the content-area experts who can help you achieve company goals bigger, better, and faster.

If you’re not getting that expert–level advice and instead find yourself micromanaging them and their activities, then you need to go back and take the micromanagement test:

Did you hire the wrong people? Or are you micromanaging the right people to death?

You hired these people for a reason. If you can’t trust and rely on your team to help create a dynamic company that everyone is excited to be part of, then it’s time to do a little self-reflection.

Re-evaluate your organizational goals and strategies, and be honest about your management style. Is it serving your purpose or holding you back? Are you drawing great employees to you or inspiring them to look elsewhere?

Photo by Peshkova

5 Pillars of Employee-Related Expenses eBook