It sounds risky, stressful, and perhaps confusing because so much could go wrong. But you know – or have been told – you’re micro managing. But how do you let go and stop this habit?
Did you read my last post and find the awareness questions useful? Here in this follow up post, you’ll find a mixture of home and work suggestions. Because you’re the same person no matter which context you’re in, right? If you’re micro managing at work, you’re likely doing it at home.
Be clear with your expectations. How do you like the food, laundry, or pots/pans put away? How long do you expect a project by your team member to take? What’s your budget for website changes? Start with lower expectations at first, and low risk decisions. It wasn’t overnight that you could meet your own high standards, so don’t expect them to do that for awhile. DO expect progress.
When do you need to be called in? I call these “red flags,” though I really mean “yellow,” as in before the crisis. Example: You tell your kids they can mow the lawn, but if gas is needed, you need to be called in.
Example: You let your managers know which legal, financial or people issues you need to be alerted to, before they happen. Teaching and coaching. You let your vendor partner know that once your work reaches a certain dollar amount, you want to know. That allows you to make a conscious choice of next steps and in your own time.
Expect mistakes and know that mistakes are not failure but learning. What happens when you make a mistake? You remember better next time, right? When a mistake happens, discuss it together and learn from it – no judgment, only growth. Next time will be/should be better. This education and coaching is part of managing and leading, the benefits of loosening up on the micro managing.
Ask questions instead of directing. Those of us who organize and coach know this well. When you direct, you’re telling and not engaging the person or their ideas and mind. When you ask first, you’re engaging their mind, teaching because you’re making them think about it for themselves, and realizing what they do know. Put aside your expert hat. Wear the “curiosity” hat instead. Ask what they think. What they want. What they would do in your shoes.
Ask yourself: what will happen if you let go? Play it out. Once you lean into the challenge and get specific, even the worst case scenario is not as bad as imagined.
Have enough ideas ready of what you will do instead of what you are doing now. Let your own stuff get you motivated so that it pulls you out of where you are. “If I didn’t have to … then I’d finally have time for …”
Micro Managing: Benefits to Your Work
You have a lot on your plate and other things you want to do, right? So … Which of these low risk experiments could you try? Wouldn’t that give you the time to do what you need to do? Yes.
Micro managing is a habit. It could be a skill you saw in your parents or your managers. Habits can be unlearned, if you want to move onto bigger things. That’s the choice.
P.S. If you want to let others grow, and learn to let go yourself, consider short term coaching. We start with a 1/2 hour no charge call. You’ll walk away with at least one new strategy for home, work or life. Check in with me via email Sue@CoachSueWest.com or call 603.554.1948.