Good managers should define the what (i.e. goals and objectives).
Good employees should then define the how (i.e. plan to execute).
Micromanaging is when the manager defines the what and how. Consider the following tips to avoid that:
1. Set up proper communication process
When there is a regular cadence of sharing status updates, you have less of a desire to micromanage. Setup a product like Weekly Update that has each team member share a written summary once a week.
2. Hire people that are better than you
When the team is made up of people who are experts in their craft, there is little need to micromanage. For example, if the CEO hires a great VP Marketing, that person should know far more about marketing and be advising the CEO on best approach.
3. Jump in and help when people get stuck
Just because you are not micromanaging doesn’t mean you can’t jump in and help employees when they are stuck, or coach your team. To the contrary, coaching is very important. If you see someone doing something ineffectively on your team, help point them in the right direction.
4. Give lots of constructive feedback
By sharing lots of feedback, you’ll give the team more insight into different approaches so they can figure out what works best. To be sure, don’t expect all feedback to be used, and position that feedback as a “consideration” rather than a “mandate.”
5. Shuffle responsibilities when things aren’t working
You may have the most urge to micromanage if you see someone in a role that is clearly not working. If coaching fails, it may be best to change the responsibilities and delegate them to someone else who can better execute. This might mean parting ways with that employee or finding him a different role.