Do you recognize the line between management and micro-management? A key quality of a good project manager is learning when to be hands-on, and when to let the team do what they do best. This “line” is enigmatic, and depends on the project, the team members, and your own personality and management style.
Bright Hub is an excellent source of articles from professionals across a wide array of categories – and their IT community is particularly strong. User N Nayab wrote a great article on the subject that we can draw some very sound tips from.
Nayab identifies multiple aspects of being an effective manager without micro managing. Drawing on his points, we see three crucial areas of focus: training, planning, and facilitating.
Training and planning are the cornerstones of an effective project team. Training means ensuring team members have the skills and tools to do their job effectively. The more opportunities your team has to improve and expand their abilities, the more dynamic and effective the team and the results will be.
Whereas training is an ongoing process, planning is the first step for each project. By creating a system of priorities, establishing an order of tasks, and logically delegating each area to the team, you enable the team to work effectively – and this will allow you to manage rather than micro-manage.
Facilitating is the natural result of a properly planed and assigned project, given to an empowered and properly trained team. If the planning was unclear or the team’s training is inadequate, you’ll find you have no option other than to take a high-stress, high micro-managing approach in order to get things done. But when you’ve prepared properly, you can facilitate the team – allowing the to accomplish their tasks and allowing you to keep the larger scale of the project in mind.
Simply put: when you assemble the right team, give them both the direction and the freedom needed to flourish, and allow yourself to focus on the bigger picture, the quality of completed projects will validate your efforts.