Now that you came to realize what the key signs of a micromanager are (if you missed our previous article about this topic feel free to check it here: Are you a Micromanager?), we now move to another aspect which is the key problem for people being micromanaged: how to deal with this micromanager?!
We know how you feel, it is very very frustrating, stressful, annoying, and you can throw in all the bad terms in the world here, but newsflash .. your micromanager is not changing on his own (unless he has one of these visions or life-changing experiments, but how likely is that ! ). Back to reality, so to deal with your micromanager, you need to figure out how to lead him to a change in attitude with you and your work, by targeting his weaknesses and working on them through following these steps:
As we highlighted in the previous article, lack of trust in others is a key issue micromanagers have, so how do you resolve this? you need to show him/her that S/he can trust you. And trust is something built over time, so start by performing great at your current tasks. Your manager is probably giving you simple or lame tasks anyhow, but as you excel in your tasks, you can ask for more work, show motivation, and then claim bigger and more important tasks. And as you do great on these tasks as well, you will cross through the barrier of getting larger tasks delegated to you, and hence being in the trust zone.
Many employees do great work, but do fail to show that. You need to be able to show your manager the great level of work you are performing, how essential your role is, and not wait until being asked. You can think of this as micromanaging your micromanager, through playing some sort of reverse psychology to show your manager your great work and keeping him updated all the time without the need for him/her to follow up on your progress.
Talk it Through
One of the often underestimated methods of resolving such situations is talking it through. Your manager simply might not be even aware that he is micromanaging you, and your discussion with him might just be his AHHA moment to realize this. You can discuss how he is managing you and your projects, and how you can further gain his trust and show your dedication without being snobbish or defying him, an action which might cause a backward reaction.
As you gain the trust of your manager, you will move into his circle of trust (as Jack Byrnes terms it in Meet the Parents), and this might open a channel with him for listening to your suggestions and advices. Your advice will help him accept others, delegate more, and will help you grow with the company.
Through knowing how to deal with your micromanager, you are doing everyone a favor: making yourself happier at work, growing with your organization, helping your manager focus on the right things, and bringing more profit to your organization. So a big thank you to you!
If it all fails? well, you will have to assess whether staying under this manager is worth the trouble, if you have the potential to move to another department within your company, or just switch jobs.