Exploring Micromanagement: A Deeper Dive

Micromanagement—just the term is enough to make anyone cringe. It’s like being stuck in traffic when you’re already late—a frustrating experience that can leave you feeling utterly powerless. But let’s not just brush off micromanagement as an annoying quirk of some bosses; there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye. So, let’s roll up our sleeves and dissect this phenomenon through the lens of Extreme Ownership.

Understanding Micromanagement

A micromanaging boss is like that overbearing parent who hovers over your shoulder, dictating every move you make. They drown you in a sea of detailed instructions, leaving little room for creativity or autonomy. It’s a common woe among employees and one that can quickly sour the work environment.

Use it as a Mirror

When we apply the principles of Extreme Ownership to this challenge, we uncover some fascinating insights. A micromanaging boss isn’t just a nuisance; they’re also a reflection of ourselves. It’s an opportunity to take a long, hard look in the mirror and ask ourselves some tough questions. Have we dropped the ball somewhere? Failed to meet expectations? Sometimes, the boss’s micromanaging tendencies are a direct result of our own shortcomings. And you know what? That’s okay. Recognizing our mistakes is the first step toward improvement. The next step is coming up with ways to ensure that we won’t make those mistakes again and sharing our get-well plan with the boss. We follow this up with hard work and top-notch performance and we’ll be back on the right track.

Checking Your Ego

Now, let’s talk about ego. The perception of being micromanaged can be a blow to our pride. We start questioning our competence, wondering if our boss thinks we’re incapable of tying our own shoelaces. But here’s the thing: harboring resentment won’t solve anything. More often than not, the boss’s micromanagement stems from their own insecurities, not a lack of faith in our abilities. So, instead of stewing in bitterness, let’s check our egos at the door and focus on building a positive relationship with our boss. Treat them with the same respect you would a beloved family member and watch how the dynamics shift in your favor. Micromanagement may just be one of our boss’s idiosyncrasies. If we let it bother us, that’s on us, not the boss. We will always be better off having a positive relationship with the boss than an antagonistic one.

Building Leadership Capital

Finally, let’s talk about leadership capital. Think of it as a currency you earn through hard work, professionalism, and effective communication. Every time you deliver results, avoid unnecessary pushback, or engage with your boss in a constructive manner, you’re making deposits into your leadership account. And just like with a real bank account, you need to build up enough capital before you can make withdrawals—in this case, in the form of more autonomy for you and your team.


So, the next time you find yourself butting heads with a micromanaging boss, remember this: it’s not just a headache, it’s an opportunity. Use it as a chance for self-reflection, ego-checking, and capital-building. And who knows? With the right approach, you might just turn that micromanager into your biggest supporter, and at minimum, you will turn the workplace into a much more positive environment for you and your team.

Online Leadership Training

Get on-demand leadership training from Echelon Front Instructors. Premium and Free courses are available. Sign up now.