Case 462: The People v the Micro Manager

The stuff of nightmares, the micro manager, the one who tells you what to do and how to do then wades in constantly to tell you what you’re doing wrong, what you should be doing and then waits by to make sure that’s exactly what you’re doing. It must be tiring being a micro-manager, not only worrying about their own responsibilities but also those of their subordinates. I’d imagine, it’s the equivalent of being a mother. Rooms aren’t cleaned properly, dishes aren’t put in the right space, etc etc. Imagine being a mother and a micro manager at work. A day full of micro managing, enough to drive anyone to early retirement, but not the micro-manager, they love it. They are in their element dishing out instruction after instruction, just in case you forgot who is in charge. Hint: it’s not you.

The obvious down side of micro management is the impact on confidence and morale, while it also said by taking away sense of responsibility, employees think less for themselves which leads to less idea sharing. So, how can we deal with a micro manager and this negative impact.

  1. Humour them – Easier said than done, but don’t feed the beast. Listen to everything and take it on board but remember to think for yourself. You have been hired to do a job because of your expertise so stay true to them.
  2. Tell them – Unlikely to ever happen, taking this route is a sure way to confrontation and things ending badly. We know from every Disney film ever, nobody likes this ending so best advice is to stay clear. If you must though, be gentle and in the nicest way possible, tell your superior you hate working for them and would rather be unemployed.
  3. Run away – The easiest and best option. Don’t stay and listen to this rubbish. Who wants to work with someone who openly doesn’t trust them to get the job done? Apply for a transfer, start a mutiny, resign from the company. Anything to get far away from this manager and back to normality where normal people trust normal people to do normal jobs.

Whether it’s your mum or your manager, not many like to be micro-managed so in the words of the Beastie Boys, “Stand up for your right to work” or something like that.

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