By Gladys Edmunds

 

Dear Gladys,

My wife and I often debate on how to deal with employees. I say that employees can often behave like children and I have to keep my eye on them to make certain that they do things the way I want things done. I’m the head of our family construction company that was started more than 50 years ago by my late father. My wife works in the administrative office of the company and she accuses me of micromanaging. According to her, employees must learn to manage themselves and my job is to tell them what their duties are and I should step back and let them do their jobs. What do you think?

Thanks – A.N.

Self-management is important. Micromanaging can waste both the time and energy of the manager and ultimately can become debilitating to the employee. This combination can create a lot of tension in the workplace for all parties and will most likely spill over to your customers, clients and even vendors.

When we talk about self-management, I believe that a person’s strength and weaknesses must be taken into account. How do you identify the strengths of your employee and how do you go about developing those strengths? Keep in mind that if we want our staff to self-manage, then that has to be a part of our agenda during the hiring process.

I am the first to admit that managing a company and its employees is not an easy task. And I have made my own share of blunders.

I once managed my company like the proverbial mother hen. I watched everything my employees did and found myself correcting them when it wasn’t going the way I would have done whatever the job was. Thank goodness I was shown the error of my ways. One day while having lunch with an older and wiser entrepreneur who I had designated as my mentor, he mentioned his concern for my management style.

He said that he had observed me communicating to my staff before leaving for lunch. And he said that if I wanted to have a continued success in business I should take his comments to heart.

He said: The boss’s job is to determine the objectives and goals of the company. Once that’s done we must lead our employees in a way that meets our goals. In leading our staff in the right direction we must understand that each person brings to the company his or her own skills and talents. And it is our job to learn what those skills are and help the employee to further develop them. When you succeed in recognizing an employee’s strengths and make a point to give the kind of input that helps the employee develop, everyone wins. But, when you fail to develop a staff person and not allow them a chance to do the work, you eventually erode confidence.

I have never forgotten that insightful luncheon. I make a point to follow his sage advice and it has served me well.

Management is not an easy task, and there are many ways to approach it. However keep in mind that you don’t want your management style to become a roadblock between you and continued success.

Consider helping your employee to become the best that they can be and it’s possible that you will see business increasing.

At age 15 Gladys Edmunds developed a travel service that would prosper for more than 30 years. She is a national award winning entrepreneur, keynote speaker, author and columnist. Visit her at www.gladysedmunds.com
 


The information provided is presented for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal or business advice. Any views expressed in this article may not necessarily be those of Nevada State Bank or its affiliates.