Updated June 7, 2023
Successfully Deal with a Micromanager Boss
If you are finding it hard to understand your manager besides doing whatever he asks for, if besides being a dominating senior who is commanding and yet remains unsatisfied, giving you a tough time in focusing on what work you must do and what you are being made to be done, then you are surely dealing with micromanager boss. These managers are the most difficult to influence or could be convinced easily.
A healthy work environment, besides the right talent and sound management, is also the first priority of any employee in the organization. A senior who guides his team plays an important role as he leaves an impression of respect and authority among his subordinates. A micromanager boss in such a situation is a harder one to be associated with because his tough outlook makes him always taken in the wrong context, and his unconvincing nature pulls him away from his team members.
It is maybe an instinct or experience that makes a manager difficult to gel with his people; he lacks trust in others and is constantly looking for an opportunity to pull others down. Unlike his unpredictable behavior, his expectations are also very naïve and unreasonable, unaware of the fact that his attitude creates a lack of confidence and insecurity among his people.
Working under a micromanager boss may sometimes put an employee in an awkward situation, affecting his job performance and commitment level with his organization.
Let us understand how we can find out whether your boss is a micromanager boss and how can you deal with a person like him.
Prove Your Capability
Saying yes to your boss’s instruction may not satisfy him. He may want more than his expectation. Do you feel even after delivering to your boss on the basis of what exactly he states, he still looks disappointing and leaves you with no appreciation or feedback? Then it’s time you need to do more than expected. Show your boss that you can be an achiever by amending tasks before timelines and try to win his trust by doing and informing you of every little thing you do. In simple language, go over and above his expectations and win his trust right from day one. You may have to think one step ahead of your boss; stay prepared for what he may inquire about and cross-check every detail to avoid any mistakes. Be smart and showcase your competencies while conserving energy when dealing with such a person.
Some managers like to give unimportant details about a project to make sure things are going his way…he may ask to send his team members regular reminders such as ‘Mail me the work progress report by EOD’… ‘Review the task assigned immediately’… this may be very irritating as they not only divert your attention but also leads to unnecessary mounting stress to accomplish the task. Micromanager boss believes in being dominating and commanding, but their attitude remains positive towards accomplishing the task for the organization’s benefit. If you want to stay in his good books, then it is important for you to amend his guidelines carefully. Doing this, you may be willing to win his confidence and trust, making him acknowledge your work.
A micromanager boss maintains extreme discipline regarding work timelines and office conduct. Therefore this may be another area where you may win his confidence by staying disciplined and reliable. You may have seen your other colleague comes late sometimes but are not threshed as badly as you were. Well, it is because your manager is extremely punctual and except no reason for others to be late. For any manager, it is easier to handle an office environment where every team member understands the value of their work contribution and time towards achieving the organization’s goal. In a team, if a few members do not deliver work as required, the manager would get aggravated and keep unfair demands from others. It is important that you understand your responsibility and stay reliable without any fear from any micromanager boss.
Get the details beforehand
You have received a project from your boss, that happens to be a micromanager personality with minimal information and stringent timelines ….what to do? For any manager, the most important thing is to get the work done on time without errors and delays. To accomplish this expectation, you must stay ahead and get as many details as possible from your boss that you feel would be required or relevant to the subject. A well-planned approach and an in-depth discussion with the manager would help you avoid misunderstanding and clarify his expectations. Getting details would reflect your extreme involvement and commitment towards work, which can infuse positive energy in others and impress the manager.
Plan an appointment with your manager suitable to his schedule, list down all the queries you have related to the project assigned… get your homework done properly by understanding the subject by yourself so that you may not
end up asking silly questions. The relevant queries reflect your creative thinking and anxiety about the assigned job.
Use your Listening Skills
Have you ever felt that what your boss is saying in a meeting is heard by you many times before also, and therefore listening to all that once again makes no sense… well, this means you are making a mistake here. A micromanager boss, though hard at influencing, has enough smartness to understand his audience and the topic on which he’s presenting his views. To win your boss’s expectations, you need to sharpen your listening skills; listen to his directions carefully; if you find it confusing, repeat it again and ask for feedback for clarification. Make eye contact with your boss to ensure you are listening to him and are involved in his discussion; taking notes is the best way to avoid distractions and having things penned down for future reference. Avoid distractions to prevent your boss from perceiving you as disinterested.
Give Regular Updates
Does it happen to you or your team members often that the first mail you receive in your mailbox in the morning is usually from your boss? This shows his over-involvement and keen attitude to know what’s happening with the assigned task. Restructure your working methodology to provide regular updates without reminders from your boss.
Such an attitude may not only surprise him but also shows a huge commitment level coming from you. Imagine the same way you receive his mail seeking updates every morning. What if he receives regular mail by the end of the day from you? This will help you win his confidence and improve your work performance.
Check with him about his opinion and feedback regularly to help you find his expectations as well as it will save you from any unexpected thing coming from him during the review. This will make your work much more transparent and enable your boss to know what you are doing each day, your plans regarding task accomplishment, and any minor details that he wishes to attain from you. Making regular updates will also keep you safe as it avoids any deviation that may lead to future problems for your project.
A boss is a human before being a senior having his own fear and weaknesses; he being a boss, may not discuss it with his team members, but this doesn’t make them elope. As a subordinate, you must understand what is important for your boss and what motivates or fears him. Knowing more about him is another step to making good terms with him…. Does commanding others give him a superior feeling, or is this the best way to achieve tasks on time? Is he an achiever always, and therefore, he looks for perfection in others, or is he a power-hunger who wants his hand in everything to maintain control over people and situations?
You may show empathy towards him, making him feel important by saying things like, “I understand how important this project is to the company, but without you, it would have been impossible for me to accomplish it,”… “I appreciate you to guide me at every step, making the result looks like so positive and as per your expectations”… giving him credit for his inputs will make him feel good. It further raises your impression of him.
How do you treat your manager? Have you or your team ever asked this question to each other…. If not, this may be the right time to understand that his tone and attitude toward others are not important, and your behavior towards your senior is also important. A micromanager boss does carry a reputation of not being a people lover due to his dominating attitude, but they are near to being perfectionists. Their work and commitment to achieving organizational goals are commendable and demand respect.
It’s not easy being a perfectionist as well as a people lover on the same hand, but being subordinate to such a boss if his team member maintains politeness towards him can improve the situation in a far better way. Showing encouragement and support to the micro manager’s strength, one can convey his concerns and feelings about the controlled management practice by him. Any hard words or written communication could hamper your relations with the manager and affect your future work prospects.
Don’t Revert to Micromanagement
If your boss is not good with you, that doesn’t mean you have to be like him to take out your aggression. He may have several reasons to behave like that, and you should know how to work with a perfectionist. Micromanagement can be a learning process to ensure tasks go as planned. There is no tit-for-tat in a working setup. Therefore, you need to understand the importance of authority and respect it, as it will teach you a lot in life.
There is no revert to micromanagement as it serves no purpose; Avoid complaining to your seniors as it may harm your reputation. Consider empathy before anonymously reporting someone’s behavior publicly.
I’m a big micromanager personality; I’m a stickler about organization; everything needs a place, a purpose, and I micromanage myself even when I’m in the studio.
Looking at a perfectionist approach, senior-level management may be a tough job. Despite the challenges, there are ways to understand and deal with a micromanager boss without being harassed by them. The approach is positive as it gets the best out of people in controlled and stressful situations. A micromanager personality is a person who is committed to his work and knows how to get his job done.
Here are some articles that will help you to get more detail about the micromanager boss, so just go through the link.