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Old 01-01-2011, 03:40 PM
 
Location: SW Missouri
15,849 posts, read 32,079,940 times
Reputation: 22507

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Those of you who know me are aware that my last place of employment was quite stressful and unsatisfying insofar as my job was concerned. The primary issue/problem stemmed from the constant and endless micromanaging that I had to deal with on a minute-by-minute basis.

When I was hired there, it was under the auspices that I "knew what I was doing" and I would be free to do my job since, as the owners stated..."They don't know anything" about marketing.

Shortly thereafter I discovered that this was all talk, and that they had no intention, whatsoever, of allowing me to do my job effectively. I also discovered that there had been FIVE previous people in my position in the past two years, each of whom left because they could not handle the incessant micromanaging.

Apparently, in the Branson area, this is a problem. After having worked as an independent contractor for many years which required a LOT of travel. Due to the increase of gas prices, which were eating up my profits, I decided to get a "real job". The first was in management and I enjoyed it but did not want to stay in that line of work. Thereafter, when pursing my actual career path (marketing), I fell victim to THREE CONSECUTIVE JOBS where I was subjected to constant micromanaging.

For those of you who have successfully dealt with kind of work environment I'd like to know what your secrets are. How do you handle these issues? How do you deal with someone CONSTANTLY looking over your shoulder and telling you (incorrectly, I might add), how to do every minute aspect of your job?

I just curious to know how you do it.

20yrsinBranson
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Old 01-01-2011, 05:14 PM
 
Location: under a bridge
580 posts, read 2,136,735 times
Reputation: 1035
Quote:
Originally Posted by 20yrsinBranson View Post
Those of you who know me are aware that my last place of employment was quite stressful and unsatisfying insofar as my job was concerned. The primary issue/problem stemmed from the constant and endless micromanaging that I had to deal with on a minute-by-minute basis.

When I was hired there, it was under the auspices that I "knew what I was doing" and I would be free to do my job since, as the owners stated..."They don't know anything" about marketing.

Shortly thereafter I discovered that this was all talk, and that they had no intention, whatsoever, of allowing me to do my job effectively. I also discovered that there had been FIVE previous people in my position in the past two years, each of whom left because they could not handle the incessant micromanaging.

Apparently, in the Branson area, this is a problem. After having worked as an independent contractor for many years which required a LOT of travel. Due to the increase of gas prices, which were eating up my profits, I decided to get a "real job". The first was in management and I enjoyed it but did not want to stay in that line of work. Thereafter, when pursing my actual career path (marketing), I fell victim to THREE CONSECUTIVE JOBS where I was subjected to constant micromanaging.

For those of you who have successfully dealt with kind of work environment I'd like to know what your secrets are. How do you handle these issues? How do you deal with someone CONSTANTLY looking over your shoulder and telling you (incorrectly, I might add), how to do every minute aspect of your job?

I just curious to know how you do it.

20yrsinBranson

I don't believe there are any secrets. You either put up with it, or do like the previous 5 people who were in your position and leave. Whatever you do, you're not going to change them. Nobody would be able to answer this question better than those 5 people who left, and you see what their solution to the problem was.
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Old 01-01-2011, 05:43 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
36,560 posts, read 47,179,124 times
Reputation: 47495
I have. The way I've beaten it was to do what i said I'd do with a minimum of checking back with the boss. Not that you don't do what you're supposed to, it was what I did.

Some of my colleagues were never able to shake the micro-managing.
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:12 AM
 
Location: PNW
682 posts, read 2,230,669 times
Reputation: 653
You either have to play the game or leave. I played for as long as I could (6 yrs), and when the time was right, left. Despite taking my concerns to upper management and HR, nothing was done for the most part. I was even told by the HR rep, "No one has been able to work for hi as long as you have. I don't know how you do it." I had realized fairly early on that staying or leaving was completely in my control, and I chose to stay for a variety of reasons, none of which had anything to do with my boss. Yes he was a control freak and micromanager, but I was the one who was in control of my behavior and my life. He couldn't touch that, and that's what got me through.

That and I liked to play passive aggressive mind games. For example, he liked to be the first one in the office, so for several weeks I started coming in earlier than he did (we had flexible schedules). Then he would come in earlier than me. So I came in even earlier, and so on, until he was coming in before 6:00 am. Mind you, this was a regular 8:00-4:30 company. Little things like this amused me.
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Old 01-02-2011, 07:19 AM
 
26,590 posts, read 57,143,433 times
Reputation: 13091
I've handled this in the past by doing exactly what I was told to do, after making sure there was a solid e-mail trail of their specific requests and my gentle assertation that there might be another way of doing something that would be more effective.

When the project failed because I "did it their way" I had the e-mails to say "I told you so." After that happened a couple of times, they were more willing to listen and allow me to do the job I was hired to do.

I've also learned that sometimes seemingly illogical things are done for a reason because of other thigns that I'm not aware of and really aren't my business to know.

The best way to get a micromanager off your back is to do what they want and stop trying to buck the system. Once they realize you're in synch with their way of doing things, they'll usually back off.
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Old 01-02-2011, 09:50 AM
 
2,017 posts, read 5,239,379 times
Reputation: 1671
North Beach and annerk have really good advice.

My last job as a manager, I had to be a micro manager to some of my employees which I HATED doing-- I hated having to basically waste my time to make sure someone else was doing their job. Not everyone was micro managed-- and the ones who were, I was always honest and upfront of how they could get me to stop. Some were able because they were able to learn how to manage themselves but others were just incapable. I learned as a manager that you have to change your styles based on the people you manage and treat them as individuals. However, due to my experience my first instinct now is to micro manage until I am sure that the person does not need it.

If I give you a deadline and as North Beach said you keep me apprised of where you stand so that I have the comfort to know you are on task and will meet your deadline-- and when you consistently show this ability- I am not going to micromanage you-- I trust you and your results.

But if you don't keep me apprised, tell me all is going well only when I check up on you and then when it comes down to the deadline and you are not finished, need more time, but were not able to tell me that a few weeks ago-- more than likely I am going to end up micro managing you until otherwise.

Annerk also makes a really good point-- there may be a reason why they are telling you to do something a certain way. I ran into this at one of my last jobs-- there was a particular process for something that on the superficial side seemed-- inefficient and nonsensical. However, once you really knew the reason why it was done that way-- it made sense until a further software enhancement could be made. If you just did it your way anyhow without trying to understand (and it was a complex reason so it was not something so easy for someone to understand new to the job) then you could create a lot of extra work and expense.
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Old 01-02-2011, 03:34 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
10,238 posts, read 19,692,582 times
Reputation: 10225
Don't do anything until you're expressly told to. When finished with what you're told to do stop and await instructions even if the next step is obvious. Ask the manager how he wants things done and ask in great detail; drive HIM crazy.
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Old 01-02-2011, 04:03 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
36,560 posts, read 47,179,124 times
Reputation: 47495
Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishtom29 View Post
Don't do anything until you're expressly told to. When finished with what you're told to do stop and await instructions even if the next step is obvious. Ask the manager how he wants things done and ask in great detail; drive HIM crazy.

That is one way.

If you're an early riser and the boss sleeps with his Crackberry and is not an early riser, waiting to send any work related e-mails to him until 5AM works. This is especially effective (or fun, whatever) if the boss has a penchant for coming in late by an hour or two most days.


You may also get a comment one day about how you're a "morning person".
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Old 01-02-2011, 04:45 PM
 
229 posts, read 539,388 times
Reputation: 164
This made me chuckle. I have had 2 micro-managers. One I told "You can watch me all you want, but you are only going to see the back of my head because personally, I am going to do the job I was hired to do" We subsequently became good froends as she learned to trust me.

The 2nd, I just did what I was supposed to do and then went above and beyond and he learned to trust me.

Just depends on the person. Do your job well adn tehy stop micro-managing because it's not worth their time.

Sorry fot the typos. Got one of the keyboards that are supposed to be good for you and sitll haven't figured out the keyboard - lol.

Last edited by Maryolson929; 01-02-2011 at 04:47 PM.. Reason: mis-spelling.
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Old 01-02-2011, 06:41 PM
 
2,688 posts, read 6,751,662 times
Reputation: 4164
Default In my experience...

I have found it's best to 'toss it back at 'em'...meaning, when they are hovering, simply slide over and ask them to take the reigns so you can observe. Then document how they helped you. If you interrupt their 'management session' often enough they will stop. Or, you simply ignore them and hope they go away.
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